Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Acute intermittent porphyria?

I’ve just stumbled across this very interesting metabolic disease. And found that in some cases it resembles schizophrenia ! Acute abdominal pain and psychiatric manifestations are the main symptoms. It is rare around 5-10 in 100,000 people have it. I wonder if anyone’s loved ones suffer from this and have been misdiagnosed ? Or been diagnosed ?

My family has AIP (Acute Intermittent Porphyria). My paternal grandmother, paternal aunt and dad all had/have it. Aunt and Dad were both diagnosed, paternal grandmother was suspected after her death when my aunt was diagnosed. I know my grandmother had some mental health issues, according to my dad, but I do not know what they were.

Actually, that statistic represents how underdiagnosed this condition is. In France, 1 in 1650 have AIP and this doesn’t include some that don’t show up on a certain test so that number would actually be 1 in 700 if I remember correctly. Porphyria is one of the most underdiagnosed conditions.

Furthermore, there are 3 other types of acute porphyrias that can cause neurological and psychiatric issues: ALAD HCP and VP. So no, acute porphyria is most likely not that rare.

There is a list of about 50 diseases and conditions that can cause psychosis.

I think it would be great if the medical profession did active, thorough differential diagnosis for everyone who experiences severe psychosis.

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