If you know anyone that has the scent of fish at any given time, this article might be a lifesaver for them.
TMAU is a rare metabolic disorder. It causes a patient of the physical disorder to smell like dead rotten fish. The normal production of Flavin, an enzyme that contains monooxygenase 3 (FM03) is the culprit. It has now been detected that almost all foods a patient’s body tries to digest activates the process of making the enzyme become off kilter. When that occurs, the body emits the scent of rotten fish, that also unfortunately, is not detected by a suffer, even through the smell can be as pungent as to light up and linger in an entire room. One victim, a teacher, has been quoted as saying that when she suffered from the disorder, her body odor could be experienced throughout an entire auditorium. Even more, when she has gotten work as an adult, she has been humiliated often with people literally spraying the area all day where she would be stationed.
The disease, also known as, fish odor syndrome or fish malodor syndrome, is detected in a person as a child. The mental state of young people with this body odor condition one can imagine is very debilitating emotionally dealing with such a state with peers. Men suffer less from TMAU and it seems to effect individuals when they are going through puberty the most. As far as why women seem to be more affected, doctors are beginning to believe it could have something to do with the female hormones. Even more, the scent increases in women during the menopausal years and just before periods. There are only 600 people in the world documented with having the disorder.
Trimethylamine accumulates to the point of patient of the disease releases the fish smell through every possible pore and or orifice. There is nothing that comes from the body that does not release the smell and the scent is so strong, bathing continuously and or perfumes do not cover the scent. At a low end, a person my smell like garbage. Choline rich foods seem to aid in the making of the foul fish odor.
A recent broadcast on the subject of TMAU on ABC’s, “Extreme Afflictions”, brought together two women who had suffered from the condition all their lives. One woman, an African American, had more than ten surgeries during her youth doctors performed on her hoping to find out what was causing her condition. She had also been given hundreds of medications in which known have ever worked. Another woman, a Caucasian ex-model who managed to go to an Ivy League school to become a teacher, who managed to graduate with honors contending the whole time with fish odor, landed the job of her lifetime, as she put it, but never showed up for the position because of fair of the consequences of her fishy smell. She reverted instead to becoming a recluse right before she found a website where Trimethylaminuria was being discussed and new ways to help victims. It was actually the African American woman’s website. She had finally found out what it is that she was suffering from and was reaching out to help both educate the public and help assist victims of TMAU or fish malodor syndrome with relieve from the condition through educations and referrals.