Porphyria Educational Services
PORPHYRIA EDUCATIONAL SERVICES BULLETIN
Vol. 1 No. 40 September 20, 1999
FOCUS: Incidence of Acute Hepatic PorphyriaSymptomology
Incidence of of Symptoms and Signs of Acute Porphyrias has been relatively
steady over the years since the first major studies were undertaken and
In the basic medical testbook entitled: "The Metabolic Basis of Inherited
Disease" in Chapter 66 which is labeled "The Porphyrias" Dr. A. KappasM.D.
et.al. are the authors of the articles presented in the 7th Edition, Vol II published in 1995.
The reason for the popularity of this presentation of incidences is
because it compares the early studies and one can compare them with the 1997
study which show that there is not a change really, just more ability to
diagnose because of advanced technology...and yet we still find it very hard
to get adequate---uncompromised diagnosis testing done today with all the
latest scientific breakthroughs.
The Symptomsand Signs of the acute porphyrias below are compared with
studuies done by Waldenstrom in 1957; Goldberg in 1959; a dual study by
Stein and Tschudy in 1970 and a study completed in 1997 of known accute
Abdominal pain ranked 85% , 94%, 95% and 96% respectively.
Vomiting and Nausea ranked 59% , 88%, 43 % and 84%.
Constipation was found to be 48% , 84%, 48% and 52%.
Diarrhea ranked 9 % , 12 %, 5 % and 7%.
Limb, head, neck, or chest pain ranked 52%, 50% , 54% and 57 %.
Muscle weakness 42%, 68%, 60% and 67%.
Sensory loss ranked 9 %, 38%, 26% and 21%.
Convulsions 10%, 16%, 20% and 18% respectively.
Respiratory paralysis came in 14%, 10%, 9 % and 12%.
Mental symptoms ranked 55% , 58%, 40% and 54%.
Hypertension ranked 40% , 54%, 36% and 33%.
Tachycardia was ranked 28%, 64%, 80% and 67%.
Fever and also Profused sweating both ranked 37% ,14%, 9 % and 8%.
Additionally, the 1997 study goes on to include chronic paresthesia,
numbness, abnormal urinary bladder function, decrease or loss of tendon
reflexes, tremor and seizures, abdominal distention, anxiety, insomnia,
restlessness, and depression. All of these symptomology show significant
presence in the case histories studied.