Acute intermittent porphyria: is oseltamivir safe in these patients?

Clin Med (Lond). 2022 May;22(3):280-281. doi: 10.7861/clinmed.2022-0100.


A 40-year-old man attended the emergency room with abdominal pain and inappropriate behaviour associated with stress, and the consumption of alcohol and cannabis. Examination revealed hypertension (155/100 mmHg), tachycardia (95 beats per minute), abdominal pain and leucocytosis with neutrophilia, hyponatraemia and hypokalaemia. Urine was positive for nitrites, elevated bilirubin and cannabinoids. The patient was diagnosed with acute intermittent porphyria (AIP) and immediately treated. After initial treatment, the patient improved. However, he subsequently relapsed after initiating treatment with oseltamivir for a flu-like illness. Treatment was discontinued and the patient progressed favourably. AIP recurrence could have been mediated by oseltamivir; an association not previously described in the literature.

Keywords: acute intermittent porphyria; antivirals; oseltamivir.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Abdominal Pain
  • Adult
  • Humans
  • Hypertension*
  • Hyponatremia*
  • Male
  • Oseltamivir / adverse effects
  • Porphyria, Acute Intermittent* / complications
  • Porphyria, Acute Intermittent* / diagnosis
  • Porphyria, Acute Intermittent* / drug therapy


  • Oseltamivir