Michele Ludewig

Type of Porphyria

Porphyria Cutanea Tarda (PCT)

Michele Ludewig

I was diagnosed with Porphyria Cutantea Tarda (PCT) in 1983 at age thirty seven. I had always had horrendous skin and infections of the skin. Within twenty-four hours of sunbathing, I broke out in patches of blisters on my forearms. This was the first symptom. But for a long time before this, my hair had been growing much faster than normal and my fingernails would split and crack off the top layer. My face had developed a brown racoon mask. But I didn't feel ill.

These blisters intensified with more sun exposure and broke open into sores which wouldn't heal. My skin was so thin that the slightest bump would tear a piece of it off and then another sore to heal.  It took over eight months to get it under control the first time. I had to get really pushy with my family doctor to get to a specialist, but when I did, he was a gem and was familiar with porphyria. God bless him.  We have a list of do's and don'ts that have worked pretty well.

I came out of remission two more times, the last being in 1990. I have had some other odd and unexplained illnesses and experiences and hope to get to the heart of it all as time goes by.

Blessings to all of you.