Unique medical issues in adult patients with mucopolysaccharidoses

John Mitchell*, Kenneth I. Berger, Andrea Borgo, Elizabeth A. Braunlin, Barbara K. Burton, Kemel A. Ghotme, Susanne G. Kircher, David Molter, Paul J. Orchard, James Palmer, Gregory M. Pastores, David M. Rapoport, Raymond Y. Wang, Klane White

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


The mucopolysaccharidoses are a group of inherited metabolic diseases caused by deficiencies in enzymes involved in the sequential degradation of glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) leading to substrate accumulation in various tissues and organs. GAG accumulation can cause growth retardation and progressive damage to respiratory, cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, nervous, gastrointestinal, auditory, and visual systems. In the past, few people with severe phenotypic mucopolysaccharidosis (MPS) reached adulthood. However, better methods for diagnosis, multi-disciplinary care, and new therapies have extended lifespan, leading to an increasing number of patients surviving beyond childhood. The growing number of adult MPS patients poses significant challenges for clinicians who may not be familiar with the clinical manifestations of MPS. In addition, as new interventions have changed the natural history of these disorders, it is difficult to anticipate both the impact on life expectancy and other complications that may occur as these patients age. Because the MPS disorders are multi-organ diseases, their management requires a coordinated multi-disciplinary approach. Here we discuss the unique pattern of medical issues and multi-organ involvement in adult patients with MPS and identify the challenges that are associated with management of MPS. This review is based on information from an expert investigator meeting with MPS specialists held October 2–4, 2014 in Dublin, Ireland, as well as on current literature searches focusing on MPS and adults.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2-10
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Journal of Internal Medicine
StatePublished - Oct 1 2016


  • Adult
  • Disease management
  • Enzyme replacement therapy
  • Lysosomal storage diseases
  • Mucopolysaccharidoses
  • Review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


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