Porphyria is a rare, group of inherited disorders which result from excessive prophyrins due to incomplete conversion of porphyrins into heme, which is present in all body tissues, but is most commonly found in the red blood cells. 

The accumulation of porphyrins in the body shows symptoms such as

  • Abdominal pain
  • Constipation
  • Vomiting
  • Muscular pain
  • Convulsions
  • Tingling and weakness
  • Confusion
  • Hallucinations
  • High blood pressure

All signs and symptoms arise from a dysfunction of the nervous system.  When porphyria affects the skin, it causes symptoms like itching, redness, swelling, blisters and red urine.

Causes of Porphyria

  • Genetic factors
  • Certain medications
  • Smoking
  • Infections
  • Surgery
  • Stress
  • Menstrual hormones
  • Excessive use of alcohol
  • Exposure to sun

Ayurvedic View

There is no long-term cure for this condition. Ayurvedic treatment can be used safely and effectively in the management of porphyria. The prophyria symptoms are interpreted in the light of ayurvedic pathophysiology and treated accordingly.

In Ayurvedasuch symptoms correspond to the disease appears mainly due to a combine dysfunction of Vata and Pitta doshas. Ayurvedic treatment is therefore aimed at treating Vata dysfunction and reducing excessive Pitta.

Ayurveda defines healthy person as the individual with balanced rate of Agni (metabolism), Doshas (bio energies), Dhatus (body muscles and tissues), and Malas (unwanted wastes). The healthy individual is self-established with his senses, soul and mind fully in sync with each other and maintaining a total harmony with internal peace.

‘‘Samdosha samdhatu samagnish malakriyah
Prasannatma indriyas manah swasthabhidiyate’’!!

Mild herbal medicines have digestive and anti-spasmodic actions in acute symptoms. Long term treatment with herbal medicines induces a Pitta-reducing and mild laxative actions. Panchkarma procedures such as full body massage, light fomentation and basti process (enema) using medicated oils are also highly effective in treating as well as preventing acute episodes of this disease.

Depending upon the severity of symptoms, ayurvedic medicines also need to be given to treat and prevent damage to the liver, kidneys as well as the nervous system. Ayurvedic herbal treatment needs to be taken regularly for several months depending upon the severity of the condition and complications.

In Ayurveda, diet and lifestyle is very important in preventing or aggravating attacks. Adequate modifications in lifestyle also need to be strictly implemented. All the known precipitating factors for this condition need to be avoided in order to prevent acute episodes and relapses. Ayurvedic herbal treatment, combined with preventive measures can help in successfully treating acute porphyria as well as managing the medical condition on a long-term basis.

Ayurvedic herbs for Porphyria

Ayurvedic herbs are aimed at reversing or managing the incomplete conversion of porphyrins into heme and hence utilised in the management of porphyria.

1. Acacia Seed and bark

Acacia Seed and bark helps with healing. It is great for the skin inflammation, rashes and even treats infections of the digestive tract, urinary tract, lungs, and mouth. 

2. Elephant Creeper

Elephant Creeper is an Indian herb that heals the body and works as an excellent anti-inflammatory agent for the heart, GI tract, throat, skin, urinary system and nervous system. It also increases circulation.

3. Clove

Clove is a very simple and inexpensive herbal remedy for treating porphyria. The anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of clove is very beneficial in the treatment of various disorders. Cloves can also be combined with several other herbs for better results.

4. Chamomile

Chamomile has been used since long times for the treatment of a large number of problems including porphyria. The anti - inflammatory effects of chamomile are very helpful in curbing the symptoms of porphyria. In addition, it provides relief from the pains caused due to this disorder.

5. Wattle bark

Wattle bark is very effective for providing relief in porphyria due to the presence of several useful properties such as anti-inflammatory and antioxidant.

6. Bay leaf

Bay leaf is another excellent herb used for the treatment of porphyria. The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of this herb are very effective in treating the symptoms caused due to porphyria.

is another excellent herb used for the treatment of porphyria. The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of this herb are very effective in treating the symptoms caused due to porphyria.

7. Nutmeg

Nutmeg is an excellent herb to curb porphyria. The aromatic seeds of nutmeg are also considered to be very beneficial in treating the symptoms of porphyria.

8. Licorice root

Licorice root have a powerful effect on porphyria. Licorice root is one of the best adaptogenic herbs that boost the immune system and help with stress, fatigue, skin problems, infections, arthritis and depression. It also acts as a good antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and helps to regulate hormones.

9. Sweet root

Sweet root is the great natural remedy which is useful in treating various disorders including porphyria. Sweet root provides relief from sever pains caused due to porphyria.

10. Fresh ginger rhizome

Fresh ginger rhizome has been used since ancient times for the treatment of various disorders. The anti-inflammatory, antifungal and antioxidant properties of this herb are very useful in providing relief to the symptoms of porphyria.

Author's Bio: 

DR. Vikram Chauhan, MD - AYURVEDA is an expert Ayurvedic practitioner based in Chandigarh, India and doing his practice in Mohali, India. He is spreading the knowledge of Ayurveda Ancient healing treatment, not only in India but also abroad. He is the CEO and Founder of Planet Ayurveda Products, Planet Ayurveda Clinic and Krishna Herbal Company. Read More at: http://www.planetayurveda.com