The experience of Preimplantation Genetic Testing (PGT) among Muslim couples in Oman in the Middle East

Khalsa Al-Kharusi*, Zandre Bruwer, Tina Marié Wessels

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Preimplantation genetic testing (PGT) is an alternative reproductive technology integrated with in vitro fertilization (IVF). It is a well-established technique offering a reproductive option for families at a high risk of transmitting a genetic disorder, allowing them to avoid making a decision about termination of an affected pregnancy (TOP). In Arab communities and particularly in Oman, where TOP is not favored under the majority of implemented Muslim law, termination of pregnancy for fetal indications is not always possible. As these communities are in favor of consanguineous marriage, they are at increased risk of serious and lethal autosomal recessive conditions, and as a result, PGT is a feasible option as a TOP decision can be avoided. However, undergoing PGT is relatively new in the Arab Muslim countries and Omani patients have only recently had access to the service. This qualitative study utilized a phenomenological approach to explore the experience of Omani families who had selected to undergo PGT as a means of reducing the risk of having a child affected with a genetic disorder. Fourteen participants from eight families who underwent PGT were interviewed. Data collected were analyzed using thematic analysis. The research identified four main themes: Anxiously waiting ‘Taraqub’; Unforeseen; Secrecy; and Me and My Partner. The findings of the research have provided insight into the PGT experiences of Omani families. Unique cultural and religious perspectives should be considered when counseling Omani Muslim couples.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)121-131
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Genetic Counseling
Volume30
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2021
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Arab
  • genetic counseling
  • Muslim
  • Oman
  • Preimplantation genetic testing
  • qualitative
  • termination of pregnancy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics(clinical)

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