Wednesday, July 25, 2018 by Zoey Sky
Porphyria cutanea tarda (PCT) refers to a type of porphyria/blood disorder that affects a patient’s skin. PCT is one of the most common types of porphyria.
It is also called “vampire disease” because individuals with PCT usually experience symptoms after exposure to sunlight. Porphyria cutanea tarda can have several causes, and they are often categorized as either genetic or acquired.
Common genetic causes of the condition include:
Common acquired causes of PCT include:
Sometimes, it can be difficult to determine the exact cause of porphyria cutanea tarda.
The symptoms of porphyria cutanea tarda usually include:
Risk factors for porphyria cutanea tarda may include a family history of PCT or having hemochromatosis/an iron overload disorder.
Porphyria cutanea tarda may cause the following complications:
Patients with porphyria cutanea tarda must limit their consumption of iron-rich foods like red meats.
Consuming enough vitamin C can help slow down oxidation reactions in the liver. Sources include fresh fruits and vegetables, fresh juices, or an iron-free multivitamin with vitamin C.
Porphyria cutanea tarda can be treated following proper diagnosis. Treatment for the condition will focus on managing the factors that cause/trigger PCT and treating its symptoms.
Treatment options for PCT may include:
Patients with PCT can also avoid direct exposure to sunlight and apply natural beta-carotene topical sunscreen creams to manage their symptoms. Healthcare professsionals can also recommend supplements to address any vitamin and mineral deficiencies.
Porphyria cutanea tarda (PCT) refers to a type of blood disorder that affects a patient’s skin.
The symptoms of PCT usually include fragile/thin skin, hyperpigmentation, liver damage, and photosensitivity.
PCT may cause complications like anemia, bacterial infections, and chronic liver conditions.
Patients with PCT must consume enough vitamin C to help slow down oxidation reactions in the liver.
Treatment options for PCT may include blood transfusions, oral anti-malarial drug chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine, medications for hepatitis C, and treatment for liver disorders.
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