Pyroluria or Pyrrole Disorder
Pyroluria is also known as Pyrrole Disorder, Kryptopyrroluria (KPU) or more precisely hemopyrrollactamuria (HPU). Pyrrole Disorder, is a genetic chemical imbalance involving an abnormality in hemoglobin synthesis. Suffers of this condition produce too much of a byproduct of hemoglobin synthesis called hydroxyhemopyrrolin-2-one (HPL) and hydroxy-2,3-Dimethylpyrrolidin-5-on, also known as Pyrroles.
HPL binds to or inhibits the nutrients; Zinc, Vitamin B6, Biotin and the Omega 6 Fat GLA from reaching their targets within your body. This effectively renders these nutrients unavailable for their many important physiological functions in the body such as co-factors for enzymes in metabolism. These essential nutrients when bound to HPL are removed from the bloodstream and excreted into the urine as pyrroles.
The effect of pyroluria can have a mild, moderate, or severe depending on the severity of the imbalance. Symptoms may include: poor stress control, nervousness, anxiety, mood swings, severe inner tension, episodic anger, poor short-term memory and depression.
Other symptoms of pyrrole disorder include: Abdominal pain, Acne, Loss of appetite, Allergies, Low libido, Amnesia spells, Low tolerance to stress, Migraines, Anxiety/anxious, Mood swings, Argumentative – likes to argue, morning nausea, Cold hands and feet, Motion sickness, Constipation, Much higher capability in the evening than mornings, Creaking in joints, Nervous exhaustion, delayed puberty, Nervousness, Delusions, Overwhelmed in stressful situations, Depression, Pale skin, poor tanning or burn easy in the sun, Difficulty remembering dreams, Panic attacks, Dramatic, Paranoia, Dyslexia, Pessimism, Early greying of hair, Poor memory, Eczema, Poor morning appetite/tendency to skip breakfast, elevated eosinophil’s, Preference for spicy or heavily flavored foods, Emotionally unstable to name a few!
Pyroluria is often associated with: Acute Intermittent Porphyria, Criminal Behavior, neurosis/Neurotic, ADD/ADHD, Depression, Post Natal Depression, Alcoholism, Down Syndrome, Schizophrenia, Allergies, Epilepsy, Substance Abuse, Asperger’s Syndrome, Learning Difficulties, Tourette’s Syndrome, Autism, Lung Cancer, Bi-Polar Disorder and Manic Depression
It’s onset usually occurs with a traumatic incident or stress. There is evidence to suggest that Pyroluria is a genetically based ailment. Statistics indicate that if a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, brother or sister has suffered from major Depression, Bi-Polar Disorder, Alcoholism, Schizophrenia or has suicided, there is a greater risk of Pyrrole disorder in other family members. Poor dietary choices and poor digestive health can also lead to an increase in Pyrrole levels.
Unfortunately pyroluria is not a recognized condition by many mental health practitioners. It is wide-spread and estimates as high as 20% of all psychiatric patients and 40% of people with schizophrenia have pyrrole disorder. It seems to affect women more than men but unfortunately most people with pyroluria go undiagnosed.
Diagnosis of Pyroluria
Pyroluria is diagnosed by a simple urine test which detects either KPU/HPU and/or HPL in urine. Most persons have less than 10mcg/dL HPU. Persons with 10-20 mcg/dl are considered to have “borderline” pyroluria and may benefit from treatment. Persons with levels above 20 mcg/dl are considered to have pyroluria, especially if the above symptoms are present.
The chemical analysis for HPU is difficult due to the tendency for this chemical to decompose. Sometimes it is necessary to repeat the urine test to properly determine the level of HPU being excreted. To make the initial diagnosis, no vitamins or minerals should be taken for two days before the urine is collected (This is to avoid false negative results). The specimen should be handled properly as well – collected and frozen immediately and protected from any light by being placed in aluminum foil. A repeat test to determine if the condition has been improved may be helpful.
Contact us to arrange a urine test if you feel you may have this condition that requires accurate diagnosis.
Treatment for Pyroluria
Pyroluria is easily treated in part by restoring vitamin B6 and zinc through supplementation.The active form of Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine) is known as Pyridoxyl-5-phosphate and is considered more effective in many cases although we often use a combination of both. Zinc picolinate is the preferred form of zinc as it possesses the highest bioavailability of the various forms of zinc available. Other nutrients may assist and include niacinamide (B3), biotin, pantothenic acid (B5), manganese, vitamins C and E. Food sources and nutritional supplements containing copper and red/yellow food dyes should be avoided.
People with pyrrole disorder also have a greater than normal need for arachidonic acid (found readily in eggs, butter, red meat and liver) and the essential fatty acid GLA (gamma linolenic acid– found in supplements like black currant seed oil and evening primrose oil).
People with mild-moderate pyroluria usually have a fairly rapid response to treatment if no other chemical imbalances are present. People with severe pyroluria usually require several weeks before progress is seen and improvement may be gradual over 3 – 12 months. Features of pyroluria usually recur within 2 – 4 weeks if the nutritional program is stopped. Thus, the need for treatment is indefinite.
Our laboratory produces a range of KPU caps, transdermal creams and sublingual lozenges. These are all available online from our lab. To order you must register for an online consultation which is free or alternatively contact us. We can also tailor make a specific KPU supplement to suit your needs. We can add biotin, vitamin C, etc or change the doses according to your requirements. Contact us for details.
KPU is also often associated with under methylation (Histadelia) or over methylation (Histapenia) which should also be addressed along with any zinc/copper imbalances. Our laboratory produces Primer Pyrrole Capsules and Primer Pyrrole TD Gels for those whom also have high copper levels and Primer Pyrrole Undermethylating capsules for those whom also have high copper and are under methylators. We also produce Primer Pyrrole Overmethylating capsules for KPU patients whom are also over methylators.
Alternatively if you think you may have pyroluria seek advice from a practitioner for who has undertaken training at Outreach Programs led by Dr Walsh in vitamin therapies according to Prof. Pfeiffer’s protocols. To download a biomedical prescription form click below: