On September 19, Senator Johnny Isakson and Senator John Kerry signed a resolution designating December 3, 2012 as National PKU Awareness Day, which the U.S. Senate unanimously passed.
“I am very honored to lend my hand to help raise awareness for PKU,” said Senator Johnny Isakson. “By establishing an awareness day for this disorder, we can make a real difference in improving the lives of children and individuals across the country and around the world. I commend the National PKU Alliance.
PKU is a rare inherited metabolic disorder that prohibits the body from properly processing the amino acid phenylalanine (Phe). Phe mainly comes from protein-rich foods such as meat, eggs, nuts, beans, milk and cheese.
Every newborn baby is tested for PKU through state newborn screening programs. PKU affects approximately 1 in 15,000 children. There is no cure for PKU. Without early and continuous treatment, sustained high levels of Phe can cause progressive, irreversible brain damage.
Severe brain damage can be prevented by controlling blood Phe levels, which is achieved by drinking a special medical formula free of Phe multiple times a day and following a strict low-protein diet, starting the diet immediately after birth and continuing for life.
PKU testing is done soon after a baby is born.
Visit www.npkua.org to learn more.