Serum copper levels in these patients are abnormally high. Since copper is a brain stimulant and destroys histamine, the elevated serum (and presumably brain) copper level probably accounts for many symptoms, including the low blood histamine level.
Histapenia (hista-: histamine
; -penia: deficiency of) is a shortage of histamine in the body. Histamine is an important brain chemical involved in many reactions.
Signs and Symptoms
Behavioral symptoms in high-copper histapenia include paranoia and hallucinations
in younger patients, but depression
may predominate in older patients. The patient is usually classified as having chronic or process schizophrenia
. Some studies of schizophrenics
have revealed high blood copper
, as seen in histadelia, with low urinary copper (showing that copper is being retained) as well as low blood zinc
Treatment and Prevention
The treatment program consists of the administration of zinc
, vitamin C
, vitamin B12
, and folic acid
. With this treatment the high blood copper
is slowly reduced and symptoms are slowly relieved in several months' time.