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ID:162 Porphyrins/ PBG (Urine)
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DescriptionThe acute porphyrias include AIP, HCP, VP and may present with the following symptoms: abdominal pain, psychiatric disorders, peripheral neuropathy. 75% of attacks are precipiated by either drugs (including oral contraceptives) or alcohol. With the exception of AIP, all the above can be associated with dermatological problems. Lab screen for AIP: measure urine PBG. If negative, provided sample has been collected during an acute attack AIP is unlikely, though not impossible. Patients who present with dermatological involvement require full assesment: urine, faeces and blood should be analysed.
Indication Investigation of all types of acute porphyria and all types of cutaneous porphyria.
Additional InfoIf acute porphyria is suspected, collect samples when patient is symptomatic. Contact Dr JH Barth (via switchboard) or Dr M Henderson (x66861 or via switchboard) or National Acute Porphyria Service (029 2074 7747). If urgent analysis is required please contact the duty biochemist (26922 Opt 2) or on-call duty consultant (via switchboard).
Concurrent TestsPlease also send 2x 5mL EDTA blood samples (purple top) for blood porphyrin analysis.
Dietary Requirementsna

InterpretationMeasurement of urinary PBG alone is used as the screening for acute porphyria (test may be unreliable if creatinine < 4 mmol/L). However, the investigation of patients presenting with dermatological problems requires urine, faecal and blood analysis.

Ref. Range (Male)N/A
Ref. Range (Female)N/A
Ref. Range (Paed)N/A
Ref. Range NotesFull reports from the referral lab will be uploaded onto PPM+ .
Units - Not Defined -


IP Acute TAT- Contact Laboratory
IP Routine TAT2 - 3 weeks
GP Acute TAT- Contact Laboratory
GP Routine TAT2 - 3 weeks
Turnround CommentContact laboratory prior to sending sample if urgent
Originally edited by : TJD KRA. Last edited on 04/07/2019 08:34:15. Published By RB on 04/07/2018 08:34:15.