How is a person’s health affected by phenylketonuria?
Untreated PKU can lead to: Irreversible brain damage and marked intellectual disability beginning within the first few months of life.
Neurological problems such as seizures and tremors.
Behavioral, emotional and social problems in older children and adults..
What happens when phenylalanine accumulates in the body?
Phenylalanine is an essential nutrient, but some individuals are born with a genetic disorder, phenylketonuria (PKU), that prevents them from metabolizing phenylalanine, and, if untreated, phenylalanine accumulates in the body, becomes converted into phenylpyruvate, and the individual usually develops seizures, brain …
What is the life expectancy of a person with phenylketonuria?
PKU does not shorten life expectancy, with or without treatment. Newborn screening for PKU is required in all 50 states.
Who is most affected by PKU?
In the United States, PKU is most common in people of European or Native American ancestry. It is much less common among people of African, Hispanic, or Asian ancestry.
Is PKU a disability?
In order to qualify for Social Security Disability benefits due to a diagnosis of phenylketonuria, you must be able to prove that your condition prevents you from performing any type of substantial gainful work activity.
What foods do people with phenylketonuria have to avoid?
People with PKU must avoid foods that are high in protein like meat, fish, poultry, dairy, soy, legumes (dried beans) or nuts. Some fruits and vegetables are higher in protein than others. PHE is in almost everything except sugar, salt, oil, and water.