Management of X-linked hypophosphatemia in adults

Metabolism. 2020 Feb:103S:154049. doi: 10.1016/j.metabol.2019.154049. Epub 2019 Dec 18.


X-linked hypophosphatemia (XLH) is caused by mutations in the PHEX gene which result in Fibroblast Growth Factor-23 (FG-F23) excess and phosphate wasting. Clinically, XLH children present with rickets, bone deformities and short stature. In adulthood, patients may still be symptomatic with bone and joint pain, osteomalacia-related fractures or pseudofractures, precocious osteoarthrosis, enthesopathy, muscle weakness and severe dental anomalies. Besides these musculoskeletal and dental manifestations, adult XLH patients are also prone to secondary and tertiary hyperparathyroidism, cardiovascular and metabolic disorders. Pathophysiology of hyperparathyroidism is only partially understood but FGF23 excess and deficient production of calcitriol likely contributes to its development. Similarly, the pathophysiological mechanisms of potential cardiovascular and metabolic involvements are not clear, but FGF-23 excess may play an essential role. Treatment should be considered in symptomatic patients, patients undergoing orthopedic or dental surgery and women during pregnancy and lactation. Treatment with oral phosphate salts and active vitamin D analogs has incomplete efficacy and potential risks. Burosumab, a recombinant human monoclonal antibody against FGF-23, has proven its efficacy in phase 2 and phase 3 clinical trials in adult patients with XLH, but currently its position as first line or second line treatment differ among the countries.

Keywords: Active vitamin D derivates; FGF-23; Hyperparathyroidism; Phosphate supplementation; X-linked hypophosphatemia.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / therapeutic use
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / epidemiology
  • Endocrine System Diseases / epidemiology
  • Familial Hypophosphatemic Rickets / complications
  • Familial Hypophosphatemic Rickets / therapy*
  • Female
  • Fibroblast Growth Factor-23
  • Fibroblast Growth Factors / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Fibroblast Growth Factors / physiology
  • Humans
  • Hyperparathyroidism / prevention & control
  • Metabolic Diseases / epidemiology
  • Mutation
  • PHEX Phosphate Regulating Neutral Endopeptidase / genetics
  • Phosphates / therapeutic use
  • Pregnancy
  • Vitamin D / therapeutic use


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized
  • FGF23 protein, human
  • Phosphates
  • Vitamin D
  • Fibroblast Growth Factors
  • Fibroblast Growth Factor-23
  • PHEX Phosphate Regulating Neutral Endopeptidase
  • PHEX protein, human
  • burosumab