What is Pyroluria?

Pyroluria is a genetic disorder that causes anxiety, depression and other mood disorders affecting children right through to adulthood. The onset of Pyroluria usually occurs with a traumatic incident such as moving interstate or becoming unemployed, parental divorce or death of a loved one. Severe cases present as depression, schizophrenia, alcoholism, post traumatic stress disorder, autism, bipolar disorder (manic-depressive disorder) or on rare occasions DID (dissociative identity disorder more commonly known as multiple personalities). It is estimated that as many as 20% of all psychiatric patients and 40% of people with schizophrenia have Pyroluria.

Pyroluria is a blood disorder affecting the way our red blood cells are broken down. In a person with Pyroluria certain by-products from our red blood cells accumulate in the body. These by-products aren’t cleared from the body fast enough and end up binding to our nutrients. The main nutrients affected are magnesium, vitamin B6 and zinc. Magnesium, vitamin B6 and zinc are critical for the functioning of our entire body and mind. People can suffer for years with the effects of Pyroluria regardless of what therapies, supplements they try or how well they eat. Pyroluria has only been recognised as a medical disorder for the last 10 years and testing for 2 years.

Individuals with Pyroluria exhibit a wide range of physical, emotional and cognitive symptoms; some of the more common characteristics are listed below. If you answer “yes” to 8 or more then it may be worth getting tested.

-anxiousness including panic attacks – sensitivity to bright light and loud noise

-low tolerance for stress – fatigue

-behavioural problems (especially in children and teenagers) such as oppositional/defiant disorders – history of mental illness or alcoholism in family

-antisocial behaviour – tendency towards anaemia

-poor dream recall – nausea, motion sickness

-emotional instability/mood swings, explosive temper – stretch marks

-frequent joint pain/creaking knees – white flecks on the finger nails

-frequent infections or colds – prone to acne, eczema or psoriasis

-poor appetite, especially in the morning – crowded teeth

-hypoglycaemia – retracted gums/sensitive teeth

-pale complexion/poor tanning – late onset of puberty

Sadly most people suffering with Pyroluria go undiagnosed. A simple urine test will determine whether you have Pyrolle disorder and to what degree you suffer with the disorder. The test needs to be requested by a qualified practitioner. Once pyrolle is confirmed correct treatment can begin. Mild cases will notice improvement within a few weeks. Severe cases will see a steady improvement over several months.