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Doctor insights on: Causes Of Porphyria

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What cause a porphyria attack?

What cause a porphyria attack?

Porphyria results…: From lack of an enzyme in the path for making heme, the oxygen-carrying part of blood. There are many triggers for attacks:alcohol; smoking; drugs (barbiturates, sulfa antibiotics) phenytoin; progesterone; sun exposure; increased iron intake; chronic viral illness (hcv, hiv); stress (illness, emotional/ psycho-logical, physical); dieting/fasting. http://www.porphyriafoundation.com/ for more info. ...Read more

Dr. Aletha Tippett
91 doctors shared insights

Porphyria (Definition)

Metabolic disorders caused by abnormalities in the synthesis of heme, the portion of hemoglobin which carries the iron inside red blood cells. Symptoms can range from light sensitivity to liver failure to nerve damage to bouts of terrible pain.Special testing is required to ...Read more


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What is porphyria? What are the specific problems caused by porphyria?

What is porphyria? What are the specific problems caused by porphyria?

A rare disease: Porphyria is a very rare disease due to a problem is the production of porphoryin which become part of the hem molecule that eventually gets placedinto the hemoglobin to make red blood cells. The disease can cause skin problem abdominalmpain and other problems. ...Read more

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What can cause porphyria victims to crave blood?

What can cause porphyria victims to crave blood?

Old legend: There's an idea, probably ill-founded, that congenital erythropoietic porphyria, which produces hairiness, a mutilated face, red teeth, and pain on going into sunlight is the origin of vampire / werewolf tales. The tale that these people crave blood (this isn't a classic feature) may have been added as the story grew, though heme is one factor that suppresses some forms of the illness. ...Read more

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Can porphyria cause high bilirubin?

Can porphyria cause high bilirubin?

Might occur: Some variants of porphyria can affect the liver and cause abnormal liver testing. You can get answers by analyzing your urinary and serum porphyrin levels, and this could allow interventional approaches to bring under full control. ...Read more

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Can porphyria cause high urinary copper?

Can porphyria cause high urinary copper?

No, it does not: However, there are several copper metabolism issues that can occur, including Wilson's disease, and a serum ceruloplasmin level can objectify some of the concerns. ...Read more

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Can acute porphyria cause problems with fine motor skills?

Can acute porphyria cause problems with fine motor skills?

Acute porphyria: Muscle weakness can be a symptom can comes with exacerbation of acute intermittent porphyria. Fine motor skill difficulties alone is unlikely to be the result of acute porphyria. See your PCP for any concerns about fine motor skills. Here is info on acute intermittent porphyria. http://www.porphyriafoundation.com/about-porphyria/types-of-porphyria/AIP ...Read more

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Does porphyria cause joint pain?

Does porphyria cause joint pain?

Not typically: There are small vessel obstruction so i would expect the pain to be areas and not joints. ...Read more

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Can acute intermittent porphyria cause mental illness or psychosis?

Can acute intermittent porphyria cause mental illness or psychosis?

Short answer- YES: The diagnosis of AIP should always be in the differential diagnosis of a person who becomes psychotic& who fits a certain clinical profile which usually includes vague GI symptoms and abdominal pain unexplained neuropathy, and other characteristic symptoms. Feel free to write me more questions on this topic and I'll be happy to answer: www.healthtap.com/drsaghafi ...Read more

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In regards to acute intermittent porphyria, what causes abdominal pain?

In regards to acute intermittent porphyria, what causes abdominal pain?

Great question: AIP causes an axonal neuropathy which starts in proximal arms but spreads throughout limbs, and likely throughout the body. During the cramping attacks, there is an increase in delta-aminolevulinic acid and porphobiilnogen which likely stimulates abnormal nerve activity within the gut. ...Read more

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Why does acute intermittent porphyria (aip) sometimes cause abdominal pain?

Why does acute intermittent porphyria (aip) sometimes cause abdominal pain?

AIP attacks: Summarized in the following link: https://www.isitaip.com/patient/common-symptoms-of-aip?gclid=CjwKEAjwse7JBRCJ576SqoD7lCkSJABF-bKuavsrIeqpmL2IbvtWeLN7qn1yRJPDCXD3KZWVAwA98xoC-Jfw_wcB

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What's porphyria?

What's  porphyria?

Disease family: Maybe 1 person in 1000 is born with a strong tendency to porphyria cutanea tarda and some forms of hepatitis can bring it out even in a normal person; it blisters and scars sun-exposed skin. Other porphyrias masquerade as abdominal pain, mental illness, constipation, low sodium, and chronic nerve pain -- and screening tests are often done wrong. Good luck. ...Read more

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How does one get porphyria?

How does one get porphyria?

Inherited: Typically inherited problem in the breakdown of red blood cells, in particular heme. The abdominal pain and crises can be set off by medications, alcohol, or low calorie diets. Medications that cause include but are not limited to barbiturates, anticonvulsants, estrogens, oral contraceptives, or even supplements (chromium for example). ...Read more

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Can men have acute porphyria?

Can men have acute porphyria?

Yes: Both men and women can have acute porphyria. However, attacks are more common in women because of hormonal changes that occur during the menstrual cycle. ...Read more

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Can porphyria improve with age?

Can porphyria improve with age?

With treatment: Since most forms of porphyria are inherited there is not a cure for them. Depending on the type, treatment can relieve symptoms and improve quality of life. Acquired porphyria can improve with removal of the triggering causes. ...Read more

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Is porphyria progressive or lethal?

It can be: There are many forms of porphyria, some of which are rather mild and inconsequential, others of which are progressive and possibly lethal. If you suspect that you have porphyria, then you need to see your doc right away for diagnosis and treatment. ...Read more

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What is the prognosis of porphyria?

What is the prognosis of porphyria?

Very challenging: Porphyrias are life-long diseases with symptoms that come and go. Some forms of the disease cause more symptoms than others. Proper treatment and avoidance of triggers can help prolong the time between attacks. But attacks are quite painful and can be fatal. Life is a real struggle for someone with porphyria but it is possible to even do great things - some historical figures have suffered it. ...Read more

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What are the symptoms of porphyria?

What are the symptoms of porphyria?

See below: Porphyrias involve three major symptoms: •abdominal pain or cramping (only in some forms of the disease) •light sensitivity causing rashes, blistering, and scarring of the skin (photodermatitis) •problems with the nervous system and muscles (seizures, mental disturbances, nerve damage). ...Read more

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What precipitates a porphyria attack?

What precipitates a porphyria attack?

Depends on the type: There are 8 different kinds of porphyria. Depending on the type of porphyria, an attack can be precipitated by sunlight exposure, alcohol, inadequate diet, carbohydrate restriction, certain drugs or chemicals, hormonal changes & stress. Often a combination of triggers can precipate an attack. For more info, see the porphyria foundation's website: http://www.Porphyriafoundation.Com/about-porphyria. ...Read more

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