Diseases defined by the abnormal metabolism of hemoglobin are classified as porphyrias. Porphyrias cause an abnormal buildup of porphyrin ring compounds that are essential for proper function on hemoglobin. There are multiple different classifications of porphyria, with acute intermittent porphyria being the most common. Porphyrins, the building blocks of hemoglobin, are excreted in the urine of affected people, causing extreme symptoms that range from pain to neurologic disturbances. While there are ways to treat symptoms and methods to avoid frequent attacks, there is no cure do to the foundation of the disease beginning at the genomic level. Symptoms from acute attacks can be treated by avoiding and suppressing stressors. The disease in combination with the drugs to treat, can cause extreme damage to the liver leading to possible liver failure or liver transplant. Understating the disease may be the key into determining how to reverse and prevent heme deficiencies.
Disclaimer: This paper is a review of current literature and is not the result of original scientific or medical research.
Keywords: Acute intermittent porphyria, hemin, acute, attack
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