Premarital screening programme in Saudi Arabia: Insights into men's awareness and perceptions

Sultan Z. Alasmari


This study investigates the knowledge and attitudes of Saudi men on premarital screening, 19 years after its implementation. A cohort of 133 males was examined. Out of the 133 male screening participants, a significant majority of 126 individuals (94.7%) were found to be aware of the premarital screening program. A smaller number of individuals (88, 66.2%) were aware of the conditions detected by the screening. A disagreement developed on the legality of marriage in the event of an adverse test result. Many participants stated that the primary purpose of the premarital screening program was to lessen the social and familial burdens associated with incompatible marriages. Many respondents preferred that the program include mental illness and drug testing. Even if compatibility existed, a sizeable proportion of respondents declined to proceed with the marital procedure if one companion was a carrier. The participants had a clear understanding of the importance of premarital screening. However, this assertion contradicts the current evidence regarding the prevalence of hereditary diseases. To reduce disease burden, the significance of the program and the value of making informed decisions following examinations must be emphasized. (Afr J Reprod Health 2024; 28 [3]: 63-73).

Full Text:



Al-Shroby WA, Sulimani SM, Alhurishi SA, Bin Dayel ME,

Alsanie NA and Alhraiwil NJ. Awareness of

Premarital Screening and Genetic Counseling among

Saudis and its Association with Sociodemographic

Factors: a National Study. J Multidiscip Healthc.


Almasmoum HA, Tabassum A, Iqbal MS, Abo-Alshamat R

and Aqeeli W. Knowledge and Attitude toward Hemoglobinopathies in Premarital Screening

Program among the General Population in the

Western Region of Saudi Arabia. Hemoglobin.


Binshihon SM, Alsulami MO, Alogaibi WM, et al.

Knowledge and attitude toward hemoglobinopathies

premarital screening program among unmarried

population in western Saudi Arabia. Saudi Med J.


Harteveld CL, Achour A, Arkesteijn SJG, et al. The

hemoglobinopathies, molecular disease mechanisms

and diagnostics. Int J Lab Hematol. 2022;44 Suppl

(Suppl 1):28-36.

Al-Shafai M, Al-Romaihi A, Al-Hajri N, Islam N and Adawi

K. Knowledge and Perception of and Attitude toward

a Premarital Screening Program in Qatar: A CrossSectional Study. Int J Environ Res Public Health.


Natarajan J and Joseph MA. Premarital screening for genetic

blood disorders — an integrated review on the

knowledge and attitudes of Middle Eastern

university students. Middle East Fertil Soc J.


Makkawi M, Alasmari S, Hawan AA, Shahrani MMA and

Dera AA. Hemoglobinopathies: An update on the

prevalence trends in Southern Saudi Arabia. Saudi

Med J. 2021;42(7):784-789.

Alkalbani A, Alharrasi M, Achura S, et al. Factors Affecting

the Willingness to Undertake Premarital Screening

Test Among Prospective Marital Individuals. SAGE

open nursing. 2022;8:23779608221078156.

Saffi M and Howard N. Exploring the Effectiveness of

Mandatory Premarital Screening and Genetic

Counselling Programmes for β-Thalassaemia in the

Middle East: A Scoping Review. Public Health

Genomics. 2015;18(4): 193-203.

Gosadi IM, Gohal GA, Dalak AE, Alnami AA, Aljabri NA,

Zurayyir AJ. Assessment of Factors Associated with

the Effectiveness of Premarital Screening for

Hemoglobinopathies in the South of Saudi Arabia.

International journal of general medicine.


Hamali HA. Public awareness and attitude toward

premarital screening program in Jazan region, Saudi

Arabia, an endemic area for hemoglobinopathies: A

cross-sectional study. African journal of

reproductive health. 2023;27(8):65-75.

Melaibari M, Shilbayeh S and Kabli A. University Students'

knowledge, attitudes, and practices towards the

National Premarital Screening Program of Saudi

Arabia. J Egypt Public Health Assoc. 2017;92(1):36-

Ibrahim NKR, Al-Bar H, Al-Fakeeh A, et al. An

educational program about premarital screening for

unmarried female students in King Abdul-Aziz

University, Jeddah. Journal of Infection and Public

Health. 2011;4(1):30-40.

Alsaeed ES, Farhat GN, Assiri AM, et al. Distribution of

hemoglobinopathy disorders in Saudi Arabia based

on data from the premarital screening and genetic

counseling program, 2011–2015. Journal of

Epidemiology and Global Health. 2018;7(S1):S41-


Aljulifi MZ, Almutairi MAS, Ahmad MS, et al. Awareness

and Acceptance of Premarital Screening Test and

Genetic Counseling Program in Riyadh area, Saudi

Arabia. Pakistan Journal of Medical and Health

Sciences. 2022;16(2):875-881.

Al-Qahtani F, Alfahad M, Alshahrani A, et al. Perception

of premarital counseling among King Khalid

University students. Journal of family medicine and

primary care. 2019;8(8):2607-2611.

Al-Qattan HM, Amlih DF, Sirajuddin FS, et al. Quantifying

the Levels of Knowledge, Attitude, and Practice

Associated with Sickle Cell Disease and Premarital

Genetic Counseling in 350 Saudi Adults. Advances

in Hematology. 2019;2019:3961201-7.

Albanghali MA. Prevalence of Consanguineous Marriage

among Saudi Citizens of Albaha, a Cross-Sectional

Study. International journal of environmental

research and public health. 2023;20(4):3767.

Bin Zuair A, Aldossari S, Alhumaidi R, Alrabiah M and

Alshabanat A. The Burden of Sickle Cell Disease in

Saudi Arabia: A Single-Institution Large

Retrospective Study. Int J Gen Med. 2023;16:161-

AlOtaiby S, Alqahtani A, Saleh R, Mazyad A, Albohigan

A and Kutbi E. Comprehension of premarital

screening and genetic disorders among the

population of Riyadh. Journal of Taibah University

Medical Sciences. 2023;18(4):822-830.

Alhusseini N, Farhan H, Yaseen L, Abid S, Imad SS and

Ramadan M. Premarital mental health screening

among the Saudi population. Journal of Taibah

University Medical Sciences. 2023;18(1):154-161.

Scott SB, Rhoades GK, Stanley SM, Allen ES and

Markman HJ. Reasons for Divorce and Recollections

of Premarital Intervention. Couple and family

psychology. 2013;2(2):131-145.


  • There are currently no refbacks.