Question: What Age Group Is Affected By PKU?

How does PKU affect the brain?

PKU affects the brain.

When neurotransmitters are not made in the right amounts, the brain cannot function properly.

High blood Phe levels can cause disruptions in neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine, which are important for mood, learning, memory, and motivation..

Does PKU affect lifespan?

About one in 15,000 babies is born with PKU in the United States. PKU leads to a build-up of the amino acid phenylalanine, which is toxic to the nervous system. Without treatment, PKU can cause intellectual disabilities. PKU does not shorten life expectancy, with or without treatment.

Are there different levels of PKU?

There are four types of PKU: Hyperphenylalaninemia: the lowest level above normal. Mild PKU: blood levels are mildly elevated. Moderate or variant: levels are not low but not high.

Can you grow out of PKU?

A person with PKU does not outgrow it and must stay on the diet for life.

Do all babies get tested for PKU?

Although PKU is rare, all newborns in the United States are required to get a PKU test. The test is easy, with virtually no health risk.

Can people with PKU drink alcohol?

Drinking and Having PKU Alcohol changes your brain processing and interferes with your judgment. High blood phe levels + alcohol dramatically increases these effects. “It doesn’t take much”. Even one drink together with high blood phe levels can significantly impair your thinking.

What happens if someone with PKU eat protein?

A dangerous buildup of phenylalanine can develop when a person with PKU eats protein-rich foods, such as milk, cheese, nuts or meat, and even grains such as bread and pasta, or eats aspartame, an artificial sweetener. This buildup of phenylalanine results in damage to nerve cells in the brain.

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.

What gender does PKU affect?

Each year 10,000 to 15,000 babies are born with the disease in the United States and Phenylketonuria occurs in both males and females of all ethnic backgrounds (although it is more common in individuals of Northern European and Native American heritage.)

What does PKU smell like?

If PKU is untreated, or if foods containing phenylalanine are eaten, the breath, skin, ear wax, and urine may have a “mousy” or “musty” odor. This odor is due to a buildup of phenylalanine substances in the body.

Is PKU a disability?

Because the severity of PKU cases vary from individual to individual, however, a diagnosis of PKU in and of itself is not enough to qualify a person for Social disability benefits.

What can children with PKU eat?

A child with PKU should not eat milk, fish, cheese, nuts, beans, or meat. A child with PKU can eat many foods low in protein, such as vegetables, fruits, and some cereals.