Waardenburg syndrome affects about 1 in 42,000 people. It’s the cause of 1 to 3 percent of cases of congenital deafness. It can be inherited. The condition may also develop spontaneously through a gene mutation.

The little girl (her name is Ummulkhairi)with blue eyes was sighted by a lady in Northern Nigeria and the lady was obviously fascinated….. She wants to adopt one of them. According to the lady, Ummulkhairi’s mother has three of them and they are all blue-eyed but unfortunately also deaf.

Here are some images of the deaf girl with blue eyes…..This is a classical example of WAARDENBURG SYNDROME.

WAARDENBURG SYNDROME: Blue eyed but with hearing impairment

What is Waardenburg Syndrome?

Named after Dutch ophthalmologist and geneticist Petrus Johannes Waardenburg, who described it in 1951. It is congenital abnormality that causes poor pigmentation of the eyes, hearing loss,intestinal problems (Hirschprung disease). The syndrome has so many subtypes that present with different signs and symptoms…Waardenbug syndrome is caused by a genetic mutation, disruptions and maybe coupled with environmental factors.

Waardenburg syndrome
The blue eyed girl also has sensorineural hearing loss

In scientific terms, Waardenburg is a neural tube migration defect and a problem with melanin pigmentation of the eyes (sclera).

Waardenburg syndrome is not only peculiar to humans, it has been found in some species of dogs, mice, cattle, cats and white minks.

According to epidemiological studies, it is estimated that Waardenburg syndrome is present in 2–5% of congenitally deaf people. About 1 in 30 students in schools for the deaf have Waardenburg syndrome.

However, not all cases of Waardenbug has blue eyes, some may only have deafness and nothing else. For the case of Ummulkhairi, she can’t speak, she is deaf and have blue eyes. Here is a short video.

Can it be treated? No… According to Wikipedia, “there is currently no treatment or cure for Waardenburg syndrome. The symptom most likely to be of practical importance is deafness, and this is treated as any other irreversible deafness would be.

In marked cases, there may be cosmetic issues. Other abnormalities (neurological, structural, Hirschsprung’s disease) associated with the syndrome are treated symptomatically.”

Here are more beautiful pictures of the young Nigerian girl with bluish sclera 👇

Blue sclera (Waardenburg Syndrome)

Waardenburg Syndrome

Notable persons with Waardenburg syndrome are Paris Jackson and Popular Canadian YouTube vlogger Stef Sanjati.

PS: There are some cultures especially European cultures that attach having blue eyes to royalty and wealth.


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