Author(s): Alsulaiman A, Hewison J
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Prenatal diagnosis (PND) is only available for severe abnormality in Saudi Arabia, and preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) has been proposed as a valuable alternative. The acceptability of PGD is unexplored, and may ultimately determine the value of this technology in Saudi Arabia. This study reports attitudes towards PND and PGD of Saudi couples offered genetic counselling following the birth of a child with a single gene or chromosomal condition. METHODS: Thirty couples attending the King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Centre in Riyadh were interviewed using a semi-structured questionnaire. One couple had previous experience of PND and none had experience of PGD or IVF. RESULTS: Eight of the 30 couples (27\%) would only accept PGD; four (13\%) only PND; three (10\%) either technology; the remainder would accept neither test, or were unsure. The main concerns of those who would accept neither technology were related to personal religious views. Specific concerns about PGD related to the IVF procedure, the risk of multiple pregnancies, the chance of mistakes and the chance of not getting pregnant. A high proportion of couples (six out of seven; 86\%) who had a child with thalassaemia expressed interest in PGD, and all would be prepared to use technology to avoid having an affected child. Views were more mixed for the other conditions. CONCLUSION: PGD is acceptable to many couples and for some, it represents a valuable alternative to PND. However, parents' concerns are complex, and the acceptability of different reproductive technologies must be established on an individual basis.
This article was published in Prenat Diagn
and referenced in Journal of Clinical Research & Bioethics