Most porphyrias are inherited conditions with either an autosomal dominant or autosomal recessive pattern of inheritance. Porphyria can also be caused by environmental factors such as infections or exposures to certain prescription drugs. This type of porphyria is called sporadic or acquired porphyria.
The Human Phenotype Ontology (HPO) provides the following list of features that have been reported in people with this condition. Much of the information in the HPO comes from Orphanet, a European rare disease database. If available, the list includes a rough estimate of how common a feature is (its frequency). Frequencies are based on a specific study and may not be representative of all studies. You can use the MedlinePlus Medical Dictionary for definitions of the terms below.
|Signs and Symptoms||Approximate number of patients (when available)|
|Abnormality of the heme biosynthetic pathway||90%|
|Abnormality of urine homeostasis||90%|
|Abnormal blistering of the skin||50%|
|Abnormality of skin pigmentation||50%|
|Nausea and vomiting||50%|
|Abnormality of temperature regulation||7.5%|
Many of the signs and symptoms of porphyria are similar to those of other more common diseases. Also, because porphyria is rare, many doctors have not seen cases of the disorder before, making it more difficult to diagnosis. Because porphyria's signs and symptoms usually aren't distinctive, laboratory tests are required to make a definitive diagnosis and to determine which type of porphyria is involved.
If your doctor suspects porphyria, he or she may recommend the following tests:
Some of the other tests that may be done include:
The resources below provide information about treatment options for this condition. If you have questions about which treatment is right for you, talk to your healthcare professional.
Research helps us better understand diseases and can lead to advances in diagnosis and treatment. This section provides resources to help you learn about medical research and ways to get involved.
Nonprofit support and advocacy groups bring together patients, families, medical professionals, and researchers. These groups often raise awareness, provide support, and develop patient-centered information. Many are the driving force behind research for better treatments and possible cures. They can direct people to research, resources, and services. Many groups also have experts who serve as medical advisors. Visit their website or contact them to learn about the services they offer. Inclusion on this list is not an endorsement by GARD.
Living with a genetic or rare disease can impact the daily lives of patients and families. These resources can help families navigate various aspects of living with a rare disease.
These resources provide more information about this condition or associated symptoms. The in-depth resources contain medical and scientific language that may be hard to understand. You may want to review these resources with a medical professional.
The following diseases are related to Porphyria. If you have a question about any of these diseases, you can contact GARD.
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I would like to be tested for porphyria. How is this condition diagnosed? Is genetic testing available? See answer
What can you tell me about acute intermittent porphyria and Chester porphyria? See answer