The challenge of hypophosphatasia diagnosis in adults: results from the HPP International Working Group Literature Surveillance.

Document Type


Publication Date



DOI: 10.1007/s00198-023-06859-8


Hypophosphatasia (HPP) is an inborn error of metabolism caused by reduced or absent activity of the tissue non-specific alkaline phosphatase (TNSALP) enzyme, resulting from pathogenic variants in the ALPL gene. Clinical presentation of HPP is highly variable, including lethal and severe forms in neonates and infants, a benign perinatal form, mild forms manifesting in adulthood, and odonto-HPP. Diagnosis of HPP remains a challenge in adults, as signs and symptoms may be mild and non-specific. Disease presentation varies widely; there are no universal signs or symptoms, and the disease often remains underdiagnosed or misdiagnosed, particularly by clinicians who are not familiar with this rare disorder. The absence of diagnosis or a delayed diagnosis may prevent optimal management for patients with this condition. Formal guidelines for the diagnosis of adults with HPP do not exist, complicating efforts for consistent diagnosis. To address this issue, the HPP International Working Group selected 119 papers that explicitly address the diagnosis of HPP in adults through a Medline, Medline In-Process, and Embase search for the terms "hypophosphatasia" and "HPP," and evaluated the pooled prevalence of 17 diagnostic characteristics, initially selected by a group of HPP clinical experts, in eligible studies and in patients included in these studies. Six diagnostic findings showed a pooled prevalence value over 50% and were considered for inclusion as major diagnostic criteria. Based on these results and according to discussion and consideration among members of the Working Group, we finally defined four major diagnostic criteria and five minor diagnostic criteria for HPP in adults. Authors suggested the integrated use of the identified major and minor diagnostic criteria, which either includes two major criteria, or one major criterion and two minor criteria, for the diagnosis of HPP in adults.

Journal Title

Osteoporosis international : a journal established as result of cooperation between the European Foundation for Osteoporosis and the National Osteoporosis Foundation of the USA





First Page


Last Page


MeSH Keywords

Infant; Adult; Infant, Newborn; Humans; Hypophosphatasia; Alkaline Phosphatase; Mutation; Prevalence


Diagnostic parameters; HPP diagnosis in adults; Hypophosphatasia; Systematic review


Erratum in

Library Record