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porphyria Syllabification: por·phyr·i·a
Pronunciation: /ˌpôrˈfirēə/

Definition of porphyria in English:


A rare hereditary disease in which the blood pigment hemoglobin is abnormally metabolized. Porphyrins are excreted in the urine, which becomes dark; other symptoms include mental disturbances and extreme sensitivity of the skin to light.
Example sentences
  • Other metabolic neuropathies include symptomatic thyroid disease, porphyria, and renal or hepatic failure.
  • Clinically identical acute attacks can occur in acute intermittent porphyria, variegate porphyria, hereditary coproporphyria, and plumboporphyria.
  • The actual article, of course, has much more to it: the cause of his madness has been diagnosed as vitamin deficiency, anaemia, hyperthyroidism and a metabolic disease called porphyria.


1920s: modern Latin, from porphyrin.

Definition of porphyria in:
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