Skip to main content Accessibility help



The prevalence of consanguinity in eight provinces of Afghanistan has recently been reported by Saify & Saadat (2012). The present cross-sectional study was done in order to illustrate the prevalence and types of consanguineous marriages among other populations of Afghanistan. Data on types of marriages were collected using a simple questionnaire. The total number of couples in this study was 5200 from the following provinces: Farah, Ghazni, Herat, Hilmand, Kabul, Kandahar, Logar, Parwan and Wardak. Consanguineous marriages were classified by the degree of relationship between couples: double first cousins, first cousins, first cousins once removed, second cousins and beyond second cousins. The coefficient of inbreeding (F) was calculated for each couple and the mean coefficient of inbreeding (α) estimated for each population. The α in the country was 0.0226, ranging from 0.0203 in Farah province to 0.0246 in Herat province. There were significant differences between provinces for frequencies of different types of marriages (p<0.001). First cousin marriages (21.7%) were the most common type of consanguineous marriages, followed by second cousins (16.0%), first cousins once removed (14.0%), beyond second cousins (6.9%) and double first cousins (1.6%). There was significant difference between ethnic groups for the types of marriages (p<0.001). Tajiks (Soni) and Sadats showed the lowest (α=0.0215) and highest (α=0.0242) levels of consanguinity among ethnic groups in Afghanistan, respectively. The present study shows that the Afghani populations, the same as other Islamic populations, have high levels of consanguinity.

Hide All
Akrami, S. M. & Osati, Z. (2007) Is consanguineous marriage religiously encouraged? Islamic and Iranian considerations. Journal of Biosocial Science 39, 313316.
Alper, O. M., Erengin, H., Manguoglu, A. E., Bilgen, T., Cetin, Z., Dedeoglu, N. & Luleci, G. (2004) Consanguineous marriages in the province of Antalya, Turkey. Annales de génétique 47, 129138.
Bittles, A. H. (2001) Consanguinity and its relevance to clinical genetics. Clinical Genetics 60, 8998.
Bittles, A. H. (2003) The bases of western attitudes to consanguineous marriage. Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology 45, 135138.
Bittles, A. H., Grant, J. C. & Shami, S. A. (1993) An evaluation of consanguinity as a determinant of reproductive behaviour and mortality in Pakistan. International Journal of Epidemiology 22, 463467.
Khoury, S. A. & Massad, D. (1992) Consanguineous marriage in Jordan. American Journal of Medical Genetics 43, 769775.
Mian, A. & Mushtaq, R. (1994) Consanguinity in population of Quetta (Pakistan): a preliminary study. Journal of Human Ecology 5, 4953.
Nafissi, S., Ansari-Lari, M. & Saadat, M. (2010) Effect of inbreeding on weight gain of offspring from birth to 12 months after birth: a study from Iran. Journal of Biosocial Science 42, 195200.
Nafissi, S., Ansari-Lari, M. & Saadat, M. (2011) Parental consanguineous marriages and age at onset of schizophrenia. Schizophrenia Research 126, 298299.
Othman, H. & Saadat, M. (2009) Prevalence of consanguineous marriages in Syria. Journal of Biosocial Science 41, 685692.
Rafiee, L. & Saadat, M. (2011) Prevalence of consanguineous marriages among Iranian Georgians Journal of Biosocial Science 43, 4750.
Saadat, M. (2005) Epidemiology and mortality of hospitalized burn patients in Kohkiluye va Boyerahmad province (Iran): 2002–2004. Burns 31, 306309.
Saadat, M. (2007) Consanguineous marriages in Iranian folktales. Community Genetics 10, 3840.
Saadat, M. (2008) Is consanguineous marriage historically encouraged? Journal of Biosocial Science 40, 153154.
Saadat, M. (2011) Association between healthy life expectancy at birth and consanguineous marriages in 63 countries. Journal of Biosocial Science 43, 475480.
Saadat, M., Ansari-Lari, M. & Farhud, D. D. (2004) Consanguineous marriage in Iran. Annals of Human Biology 31, 263269.
Saadat, M. & Zendeh-Boodi, Z. (2006) Correlation between incidences of self-inflicted burns and means of inbreeding coefficients, an ecological study. Annals of Epidemiology 16, 708711.
Saha, N. & El Sheikh, F. S. (1988) Inbreeding levels in Khartoum. Journal of Biosocial Science 20, 333336.
Saify, K. & Saadat, M. (2012) Consanguineous marriages in Afghanistan. Journal of Biosocial Science 44, 7381.
Tadmouri, G. O., Nair, P., Obeid, T., Al Ali, M. T., Al Khaja, N. & Hamamy, H. A. (2009) Consanguinity and reproductive health among Arabs. Reproductive Health 6, 17.
Ul Haq, F., Jalil, F., Hashmi, S., Jumani, M. I., Imdad, A., Jabeen, al. (2011) Risk factors predisposing to congenital heart defects. Annals of Pediatric Cardiology 4, 117121.
Wahab, A., Ahmad, M. & Shah, S. A. (2006) Migration as a determinant of marriage pattern: preliminary report on consanguinity among Afghans. Journal of Biosocial Science 38, 315325.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Journal of Biosocial Science
  • ISSN: 0021-9320
  • EISSN: 1469-7599
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-biosocial-science
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed