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TITLE:

AWARENESS AND ATTITUDE TOWARDS PEOPLE WITH DOWN SYNDROME – A COMMUNITY BASED STUDY IN MAJMAAH, SAUDI ARABIA

AUTHORS:

Hamad Abdullah Alsheikh, Ahmad Nueva Almutairy, Abdullah ayidh Alotaibi, Anas Saad Alsaab, Dr.Syed Meraj Ahmed

ABSTRACT:

Down syndrome (DS) is a chromosomal disorder that results in intellectual disability and growth problems. The worldwide incidence of this syndrome is 1 in 1000 births and increases exponentially with the maternal age. People with DS usually have reduced life expectancy and suffer from mental retardation, heart problems, Alzheimer’s disease among other complications. So a cross-sectional study based on a questionnaire distributed to the participants which are the parents who are living in Almajmaah city and surrounding villages, and agreed to fill the questionnaire. The objective of this study was to assess the level of awareness of Down syndrome among the general population in Majmaah city in 2018/19. Through studying the level of knowledge and awareness about Down syndrome, assessing the attitude towards associated risk factor, and Studying the practice of primary prevention among the participants. The study showed that 44% of male respondents and 21% of female respondents know about DS. Moreover, 16% of participants know about Counseling of married couples who are at risk (10% for males and 5% for females). There were subtle but insignificant differences in the proportion of correct answers by genders. Concerning people’s attitude towards DS patients, around 34% thought that think people with DS need special schools. Moreover, around 65% thought that mixing students with DS in public schools affects other students, while around 35% believed not. Around half respondents supported offering jobs to people with DS.

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