Definition: The total measurable penalty that is incurred as a result of the occurrence of a genetic disease in one individual; one of two major quantitative considerations in the prognostic aspects of genetic counseling, the other being risk of occurrence. The fardel roughly measures the duration and the severity of the penalty, the integral of the total time-intensity function; color blindness has a low intensity of penalty throughout life, anencephaly causes intense distress for a brief time, Alzheimer disease is intermediate in both respects but the fardel is greater.
[M.E., fr. O. Fr., fr. Ar. fardah, bundle]
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