Albinism (patient information)

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What are the symptoms?

What are the causes?

Who is at highest risk?


When to seek urgent medical care?

Treatment options

Where to find medical care for Alcoholic hepatitis?


What to expect (Outlook/Prognosis)?

Possible complications

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1]; Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Shadan Mehraban, M.D.[2]


Albinism is an inherited disease which is caused by defective melanin production. Melanin gives color to skin, hair, and eyes.

What are the symptoms of Albinism?

Symptoms of albinism include both dermal and eye features:

What causes Albinism?

Albinism is caused by mutation of genes that lead to defect in melanin synthesis. This mutation is inherited through the family.

Types of albinism

Types of albinism include:

Who is at highest risk?

Individuals with familial history of albinism are at risk of albinism

When to seek urgent medical care?

  • If you notice skin changes, they might be possible developing skin cancer
  • If you notice a change in your vision or light sensitivity


Genetic testing is the most definite test for diagnosis. Additionally, ophthalmology examination is considered for evaluation of eye features.

Treatment options

The treatment options include:

  • Avoidance of prolonged sun exposure
  • Sunglasses with UV protection for light sensitivity
  • Upon sun exposure, application of sunscreen with at least SPF 30+ every 2 hours is recommended
  • Glasses to correct vision problems and eye position
  • Eye muscle surgery for severe strabismus

Diseases with similar symptoms

Where to find medical care for Albinism?

Directions to Hospitals Treating Albinism

Prevention of Albinism

People with a family history of albinism should consider genetic counseling before pregnancy

What to expect (Outlook/Prognosis)?

Patient with albinism has normal life expectancy

Possible complications


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