Introduction: Acute porphyrias cause life-threatening attacks of neurovisceral non-specific
symptoms, so this condition mimics many acute medical and psychiatric diseases. The disease
is very misdiagnosed, probably due to its low incidence and non-pathognomonic symptoms, this delays
the effective treatment onset. Early diagnosis and treatment highly improve the prognosis and
can prevent the development of neuropathic manifestations.
Methods: We assembled a systematic review, following the PRISMA guidelines and using
Pubmed as our database. Our aim was to show some peculiarities among patients that present neurological
manifestations in acute porphyria attack. We obtained the patients’ age, sex, clinical presentation,
eurological manifestations and porphyria type of 16 patients. We also evaluated the time
between symptoms onset and neurological manifestations. The average age was 28,4 ± 11,1; 50%
of patients were male.
Results: AIP was the most prevalent porphyria type. The average time between symptoms onset
and neurological manifestations was of 9,53 ± 11,6 days. Abdominal pain; nausea and vomiting
and psychiatric manifestations were the most common symptoms preceding neurological attacks.
Seizures and consciousness disturbance were the most prevalent findings within an attack. We also
presenting a case to illustrate how difficult this diagnosis can be.