Albinism is a congenital disorder characterized by a lack of pigment in the affected person’s skin, eyes, and hair. Human albinism is classified into two types: ocular, which affects only the eyes, and oculocutaneous, which affects hair, skin, and the eyes. People with oculocutaneous albinism lack melanin pigments, making them appear pale or white. Because the only symptom is very pale blue eyes, ocular albinism frequently necessitates genetic testing. People with albinism are more vulnerable to sun damage because they lack pigments that protect them from radiation. There is no cure for albinism, which must be managed through a change in lifestyle to protect those affected from the sun. Some people have eye problems that necessitate surgery or visual rehabilitation.
Albinism can occur in people of all ethnicities. The likelihood of being born with albinism is one in every 17,000 births. Males and females are equally affected.
Albinism affects approximately one in every 5,000 people in Africa. In Europe, the rate is approximately one in 20,000.
Albinism is most common in people of Sub-Saharan African ancestry.
Albinos are mocked and discriminated against in some cultures.
Witchcraft-related murders of people with albinism have increased in some African countries.
Because of murders and assaults on people with albinism in some parts of the world, the United Nations General Assembly declared June 13th International Albinism Awareness Day.
The severity of albinism’s effects varies. It is classified as a genetic disorder.
All albinos have some degree of vision dysfunction, ranging from mild to severe.
People with albinism are more likely to develop skin cancer because their skin lacks melanin.
People with albinism may notice that their skin darkens slightly as they age.
Albino people’s hair can range from white to brown, sometimes appearing yellow or even red.
Those who have albinism may notice that their hair darkens slightly as they age.
Someone with albinism’s eyes are sensitive to light due to a lack of pigmentation. This is known as being photosensitive.
Albinism can cause nystagmus (rapid uncontrollable back and forth eye movement), strabismus (eyes fail to function in unison), amblyopia (lazy eye), being extremely near or far-sighted, photophobia, having underdeveloped optic nerves, misrouting of optic nerve signaling, and astigmatism (blurred vision).
Albino newborn babies have the worst vision problems at birth, but they improve over the next six months.
Albinism primarily affects the eyes because melanin, which is lacking in those with the genetic condition, influences optic nerve and retina development.
It is estimated that one in every 70 people carries albinism genes but is unaffected. If both parents carry the gene, their child has a one in four chance of developing the disorder.