Medical Tech

US doctors help Tanzanian children harmed in albino attacks

Nov. 24, 2011: Children with albinism sit at the Golden Valley English Medium School, a school sponsored by Under the Same Sun (UTSS), in Geita.

Nov. 24, 2011: Children with albinism sit at the Golden Valley English Medium School, a school sponsored by Under the Same Sun (UTSS), in Geita.  (Reuters)

Five Tanzanian children attacked and robbed of limbs because they are albino are being outfitted with prosthetics at a Philadelphia hospital.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that New York City-based Global Medical Relief Fund connected the children, ages 6 to 16, with prosthetic specialists at Shriners Hospital.

Hundreds of albinos have been attacked in Africa since 1998.

Tanzanians subscribing to superstition see them as demons or ghosts with mystical powers whose body parts are used in witchcraft and potions. Last year, Tanzanian authorities outlawed practices that used albino body parts, making it a crime punishable by death.

On Wednesday, doctors measured the height, weight and blood pressure of the children and planned out how the prosthetics would be fitted.

The children will remain in the U.S. until receiving the prosthetics.