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Hiroaki Iwasaki Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Internal Medicine, Toshiba Rinkan Hospital, Sagamihara, Kanagawa, Japan
Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Internal Medicine, Minamiyamato Hospital, Yamato, Kanagawa, Japan

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Summary

A 73-year-old woman with type 2 diabetes mellitus was referred to our department for glycaemic control. Physical examination revealed two subcutaneous hard masses around the left shoulder and the right hip joint. The patient could not fully extend her fingers because of skin sclerosis in both hands. Laboratory studies showed hyperphosphataemia and a high ratio of renal tubular maximum reabsorption of phosphate to glomerular filtration rate. There were no abnormalities in serum calcium, creatinine, alkaline phosphatase, and intact parathyroid hormone levels, whereas serum fibroblast growth factor 23 was low. Hyperphosphataemic familial tumoural calcinosis/hyperostosis-hyperphosphataemia syndrome (HFTC/HHS) was diagnosed using whole genome sequencing that revealed a novel frameshift beyond the 584th threonine located in the lectin domain of UDP-N-acetyl-alpha-D-galactosamine:polypeptide N-acetylgalactosaminyltransferase 3 associated with a duplication of the 1748th thymine in the coding region of the corresponding gene. Furthermore, anti-nuclear, anti-centromere, and anti-cardiolipin antibodies were positive, implying that comorbid limited type scleroderma might play a role in tumoural calcinosis (TC) development. A low phosphate diet was prescribed with phosphate-lowering medications, including aluminium hydroxide, acetazolamide, and sevelamer hydrochloride. The patient displayed a decrease in serum phosphate levels from 6.5 to 5.5 mg/dL 10 months after the initiation of treatment, but her TC had not improved during treatment for more than 1 year. This case was interesting because the patient with HFTC/HHS exhibited TC despite being over her 60s, and subsequent scleroderma might contribute to the specific clinical course. When HFTC/HHS presents with elderly-onset TC, the involvement of comorbidities in exacerbating TC should be considered.

Learning points

  • HFTC/HHS occurs on an autosomal recessive basis, but its clinical course and manifestations differ significantly throughout the cases.

  • HFTC/HHS may be undiagnosed until later in life because of its rarity, unfamiliarity, and phenotype diversity; therefore, HFTC/HHS should be included in the differential diagnosis of elderly patients with unexplained hyperphosphataemia or ectopic calcinosis.

  • Comorbidities, including rheumatologic disorders, may contribute to developing HFTC/HHS-associated calcinosis.

Open access
Taieb Ach Department of Endocrinology, University Hospital of Farhat Hached Sousse, Tunisia
University of Sousse, Faculty of Medicine of Sousse, Sousse, Tunisia

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Ben Yamna Hadami Department of Endocrinology, University Hospital of Farhat Hached Sousse, Tunisia
University of Tunis, Faculty of Medicine of Tunis, Tunis, Tunisia

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Nadia Ghariani Department of Endocrinology, University Hospital of Farhat Hached Sousse, Tunisia
University of Sousse, Faculty of Medicine of Sousse, Sousse, Tunisia
Department of Dermatology, University Hospital of Farhat Hached Sousse, Tunisia

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Randa Said ElMabrouk Department of Endocrinology, University Hospital of Farhat Hached Sousse, Tunisia
University of Sousse, Faculty of Medicine of Sousse, Sousse, Tunisia
Department of Dermatology, University Hospital of Farhat Hached Sousse, Tunisia

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Asma Ben Abdelkrim Department of Endocrinology, University Hospital of Farhat Hached Sousse, Tunisia
University of Sousse, Faculty of Medicine of Sousse, Sousse, Tunisia

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Maha Kacem Department of Endocrinology, University Hospital of Farhat Hached Sousse, Tunisia
University of Sousse, Faculty of Medicine of Sousse, Sousse, Tunisia

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Mohamed Denguezli Department of Endocrinology, University Hospital of Farhat Hached Sousse, Tunisia
University of Sousse, Faculty of Medicine of Sousse, Sousse, Tunisia
Department of Dermatology, University Hospital of Farhat Hached Sousse, Tunisia

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Koussay Ach Department of Endocrinology, University Hospital of Farhat Hached Sousse, Tunisia
University of Sousse, Faculty of Medicine of Sousse, Sousse, Tunisia

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Summary

Autoimmune polyendocrinopathy-candidiasis-ectodermal dystrophy (APECED) is a rare autosomal recessive inherited syndrome caused by mutations in autoimmune regulator (AIRE) gene. The three clinical components of this syndrome are mucocutaneous candidiasis, hypoparathyroidism, and primary adrenal insufficiency. In addition to these frequent symptoms, many other components have been reported including gastrointestinal manifestations.We report a case of a 17-year-old Caucasian female patient diagnosed with APECED who presented with acute abdominal pain. Her medical history revealed chronic digestive discomfort without bowel movement disorders. The patient needed a significant increase in doses of calcium supplementation and hydrocortisone which appeared to be partially inefficient. Investigation with esophagogastroduodenoscopy and biopsy showed autoimmune atrophic gastritis. The patient eventually needed increasing doses of treatment received in order to achieve desired clinical and biological therapeutic goals.

Learning points

  • Autoimmune polyendocrinopathy-candidiasis-ectodermal dystrophy (APECED) is a rare autosomal recessive inherited syndrome caused by mutations in the autoimmune regulator (AIRE) gene.

  • The three clinical components of this syndrome that appear in early childhood are mucocutaneous candidiasis, hypoparathyroidism, and primary adrenal insufficiency.

  • In addition to these frequent symptoms, many other components have been reported including gastrointestinal manifestations like atrophic gastritis. They can be caused by many abnormalities including atrophic gastritis and the modification of intestinal biofilm and microbiota.

  • Early diagnosis and treatment of gastrointestinal manifestations associated with APECED prevent multiple life-threatening consequences like acute adrenal crisis and severe symptomatic hypocalcemia.

Open access
Ijaz S Jamall Risk-Based Decisions, Inc. 1540 River Park Drive, Suite 203, Sacramento, California, USA
Theodor-Billroth-Academy®, Munich – Sacramento, CA, Germany, USA
INCORE, International Consortium of Research Excellence of the Theodor-Billroth-Academy®, Germany, USA

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Michael C Ullery Primary Care Physician, Heart and Vascular Medical Associates, 500 University Avenue, Sacramento, California, USA

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Massimiliano Rocchietti March Internal Medicine Unit, Faculty of Medicine and Psychology, University of Rome "Sapienza", Sant'Andrea Hospital, Rome, Italy

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Elisa Pignatti Department of Surgery, Medicine Dentistry and Morphological Sciences with Interest in Transplant, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Modena, Italy

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Vincenzo Rochira Unit of Endocrinology, Department of Biomedical, Metabolic and Neural Sciences, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Modena, Italy
UOC of Endocrinology, Department of Medical Specialties, Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria di Modena, Ospedale Civile di Baggiovara, Modena, Italy

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Björn L D M Brücher Theodor-Billroth-Academy®, Munich – Sacramento, CA, Germany, USA
INCORE, International Consortium of Research Excellence of the Theodor-Billroth-Academy®, Germany, USA
Department of Surgery, Carl-Thiem-Klinikum, Cottbus, Germany

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Summary

A 44-year-old athletic man presented in 2009 with severe low back pain. Dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry revealed severe osteoporosis; serum testosterone was 189 ng/dL while serum estradiol (E2) measured by liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry was 8 pg/mL. DNA was extracted and sequenced from a blood sample from the patient since his maternal first cousin also had low bone mass and both patients were screened for aromatase dysfunction by PCR analysis for the CYP19A1 gene, which encodes aromatase. No known pathologic mutations were observed in the coding exons, but novel single nucleotide polymorphisms were detected both in the proband and in his cousin. Treatment with topical testosterone started in August 2010. Over the next 8 years, testosterone dosage was varied and switched from topical gel to injections and maintained on depo-injections of testosterone at about 60 mg once per week. Re-examination in March 2012 included a brain MRI to exclude pituitary lesions; hyperparathyroidism was ruled out (normal serum parathyroid hormone, calcium, and calcium to phosphorous ratio) and celiac disease was excluded (negative transglutaminase antibodies). Follow-up in October 2018 showed improved bone mineral density of the lumbar spine by 29% and of the left femoral hip by 15% compared to baseline measurements. This reveals the importance of measuring serum E2 for making the correct diagnosis, as well as for monitoring a therapeutic effect. Herein, we propose treatment of male osteoporosis where serum E2 levels are below about 20 pg/mL with testosterone to reverse osteoporosis.

Learning points

  • Estrogen deficiency in the diagnosis of male idiopathic osteoporosis.

  • Importance of serum estradiol in male osteoporosis.

  • Role of polymorphisms in aromatase gene on bone health.

  • Reversal of osteoporosis.

  • Tailored testosterone treatment for bone health.

Open access
Mawson Wang Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Concord Hospital, Sydney, Australia

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Markus J Seibel Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Concord Hospital, Sydney, Australia
Concord Clinical School, Faculty of Medicine and Health, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia

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Summary

We report the case of a 69-year-old female with systemic mastocytosis, diagnosed based on widespread pigmented papules and macules, elevated serum tryptase levels and confirmatory skin and bone marrow biopsy, on a background of osteoporosis. A CT demonstrated multiple sclerotic lesions within lumbar vertebral bodies, sacrum and ileum, with surrounding osteolysis but no obvious compression fractures. She was treated with the RANK-L inhibitor denosumab, resulting in significant bone mineral density gain over the following 5 years. However, her serum tryptase levels gradually increased during this period despite treatment with the multikinase inhibitor, midostaurin. It is thus conceivable that her rapid increase in bone mineral density may be partly contributed by a predominance of pro-osteoblastic mediators released by abnormal mast cells, suggestive of more advanced disease. This case highlights the complexities of systemic mastocytosis-related bone disease and the interplay of numerous mediators contributing to a phenotype of both increased bone resorption and formation.

Learning points

  • Systemic mastocytosis is a neoplastic disease of mast cells characterized by abnormal proliferation and accumulation in the skin and other organs. It is most frequently associated with the somatic gain-of-function KIT D816V mutation.

  • Systemic mastocytosis should be suspected in patients presenting with not only cutaneous symptoms suggestive of mast cell degranulation such as anaphylaxis, flushing or urticaria but also unexplained osteoporosis and gastrointestinal and constitutional symptoms.

  • The prevalence of osteoporosis in systemic mastocytosis is high. Mast cell activation leads to the secretion of numerous chemical mediators which either promote or inhibit osteoclastic and/or osteoblastic activity, with the balance usually in favour of increased bone resorption. However, in advanced diseases with high mast cell burden, mast-cell-derived cytokines and mediators may promote osteoblastic activity, leading to osteosclerosis and apparent increases in bone mineral density.

  • Treatment of osteoporosis in systemic mastocytosis involves antiresorptive therapy with bisphosphonates and more recently, denosumab. There are limited data on the role of osteoanabolic agents.

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Preet Mukesh Shah St James’s University Hospital, Leeds, United Kingdom

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Saadia Saeed St James’s University Hospital, Leeds, United Kingdom

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Susana Gonzalez Bradford Royal Infirmary, Bradford, United Kingdom

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Summary

A 77-year-old female patient with a history of treated breast cancer and a recently diagnosed laryngeal cancer presented with severe hypercalcaemia associated with suppressed parathyroid hormone (PTH) levels. Her initial investigations included 25-hydroxy vitamin D levels, short synacthen test, bone scan, myeloma screen and thyroid function tests which were within normality. A computerised tomography (CT) scan showed some right lung apical fibrotic changes. Her PTH-related peptide (PTHrP) was normal and sarcoidosis was also excluded. Her previous and current malignancies were thought to be unlikely behind her hypercalcaemia. Her 1,25-dihydroxy vitamin D (calcitriol) levels were found to be elevated. Her hypercalcaemia was initially managed with intravenous fluids and intermittent bisphosphonates infusions which would transiently reduce her calcium levels. Steroid treatment was initiated which improved her hypercalcaemia; however, the calcium levels rebounded on tapering the steroids down, a pre-requisite prior to a positron emission computerised tomography (PET-CT) scan to determine the source of the excess calcitriol production. This was cancelled following an emergency admission with marked hypercalcaemia and acute renal and liver injury. A contemporary CT scan showed a right apical lung mass with hepatic lesions suggestive of a disseminated lung primary. The histology obtained from a liver biopsy was compatible with metastatic small-cell lung carcinoma. Unfortunately, her clinical condition deteriorated further and she did not survive. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report in the literature describing calcitriol-mediated hypercalcaemia due to a small-cell lung cancer.

Learning points

  • Paraneoplastic hypercalcaemia may manifest even without overt detection of the primary cancer.

  • The workup for paraneoplastic hypercalcaemia should be meticulous.

  • Both bisphosphonates and steroids are useful in the initial management of calcitriol-mediated hypercalcaemia, but the definitive management is the treatment of the cause.

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João Felipe Queiroz Universidade de Fortaleza, Av. Washington Soares, Fortaleza, CE, Ceará, Brazil

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Soraya Lopes Sader Universidade de São Paulo, Av. Bandeirantes, Monte Alegre, Ribeirão Preto, SP, Brazil

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Carina Marques Barroso Hospital Infantil Albert Sabin, R. Tertuliano Sales, Fortaleza, CE, Ceará, Brazil

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Guido de Paula Colares Neto Centro Universitário São Camilo, Faculdade de Medicina. Avenida Nazaré, São Paulo, SP, Brasil

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Summary

We present an adolescent with X-linked hypophosphatemic rickets (XLH) with bone age advancement and its response to aromatase inhibitors (AIs). A male with XLH, confirmed with a deletion on the PHEX gene, received regular treatment since the first year of life with average growth velocity and height. He had bone age compatible with chronological age until 13 when he had a bone age advancement and a decrease in the predicted final height thought to be due to initiation of oral isotretinoin, which has been previously reported. Then, anastrozole was initiated and maintained concomitant to the rickets treatment for 2 years with bone age stabilization. He had no adverse effects or worsening of bone health markers. As a result, he maintained his height gain and improved his final height Z score compared with the predicted final height at initiating anastrozole. In conclusion, although AIs was a reasonable strategy to stabilize bone age and minimize height impairment, careful monitoring is mandatory to understand its benefits and effects on XLH patients.

Learning points

  • Although X-linked hypophosphatemic rickets patients have normal puberty, they can be affected by metabolic and environmental factors that may advance their bone age and impair the predicted final height, similar to the general population.

  • Isotretinoin may accelerate skeletal maturation during puberty in an adolescent with X-linked hypophosphatemic rickets.

  • Aromatase inhibitors showed to be a reasonable strategy to stabilize bone age and minimize height impairment in an adolescent with X-linked hypophosphatemic rickets.

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Tomoko Kobayashi Department of Endocrinology and Diabetes, Nagoya University Hospital, Nagoya, Japan

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Takuya Iwata Department of Endocrinology and Diabetes, Nagoya University Hospital, Nagoya, Japan

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Katsunari Handa Department of Endocrinology and Diabetes, Nagoya University Hospital, Nagoya, Japan

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Hiroshi Arima Department of Endocrinology and Diabetes, Nagoya University Hospital, Nagoya, Japan

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Summary

A 76-year-old female with type 2 diabetes mellitus presented with hematuria, low back pain, and intermittent fever for 7 days. She was admitted to our hospital and diagnosed with Streptococcus agalactiae (GBS) bacteremia. CT showed an air density within the right iliopsoas muscle, and an MRI of the spine revealed hyperintensity in the right half of the L1–L2 intervertebral disk, leading to the diagnosis of a paraspinal abscess and L1–L2 pyogenic spondylitis. Antibiotic therapy was started and the clinical symptoms, as well as serologic biomarkers and radiologic images of the paraspinal abscess, were improved. The therapy was stopped on day 72 despite vertebral destruction progression. Vertebral endplate ossification was observed on day 108, and further bone formation was noted on day 177. Our case study with radiologic findings over 6 months demonstrated how bone destruction with pyogenic spondylitis, which had been treated with antibiotic therapy, improved after cessation of antibiotics.

Learning points

  • Although GBS is a rare cause of spondylitis, diabetic mellitus is a risk factor for the development of invasive GBS infections, especially under poor glycemic control.

  • Bone destruction of pyogenic spondylitis can improve after discontinuation of antibiotic therapy.

  • It may be important to decide the period of antibiotic therapy based on clinical conditions, serologic biomarkers, and soft tissue findings rather than bone findings.

  • When elderly diabetic patients present with back pain and fever, spondylitis should be considered in the differential diagnosis to avoid potential diagnostic delays or misdiagnosis.

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Aneez Joseph Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Christian Medical College and Hospital, Vellore, India

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Kripa Elizabeth Cherian Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Christian Medical College and Hospital, Vellore, India

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Nitin Kapoor Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Christian Medical College and Hospital, Vellore, India

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Thomas V Paul Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, Christian Medical College and Hospital, Vellore, India

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Summary

Tenofovir-induced osteomalacia secondary to proximal renal tubular dysfunction is not an uncommon complication known to occur. A 46-year-old woman was referred for the evaluation of osteoporosis which was diagnosed elsewhere. She had polyarthralgia, bony pains and proximal muscle weakness of 1 year duration. She was diagnosed to have HIV infection and was on antiretroviral therapy that consisted of tenofovir, lamivudine and efavirenz for the past 12 years. She had attained menopause 5 years back. On examination, she had bone tenderness, proximal myopathy and painful restriction of movement of her lower limbs. Investigations showed features of renal tubular acidosis, hypophosphatemia and raised alkaline phosphatase that were suggestive of osteomalacia. X-ray of the pelvis showed diffuse osteopenia and an MRI of the pelvis done showed multiple insufficiency fractures involving the head of femur on both sides. Following this, her tenofovir-based regimen was changed to abacavir, efavirenz and lamivudine with addition of neutral phosphate supplements and calcitriol. On follow-up after 6 months, she had significant improvement in her symptoms as well as in the bone mineral density at the lumbar spine (33.2%), femoral neck (27.6%), trabecular bone score (13.2%) and reduction in the buckling ratio at the narrow neck (6.3%), inter-trochanteric region (34%) and femoral shaft (28.8%). Tenofovir-induced osteomalacia is encountered in individuals on prolonged treatment with tenofovir. Treatment consists of changing to a non-tenofovir-based regimen, as well as supplementation of phosphate and calcitriol. Treatment results in remarkable improvement in symptoms and most densitometric indices.

Learning points

  • Tenofovir is a nucleotide reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NRTI) and is a major drug in the treatment of retroviral and hepatitis B infections.

  • Tenofovir-related hypophosphatemic osteomalacia is related to proximal tubulopathy and is not an uncommon occurrence.

  • Treatment mandates changing to a non-tenofovir-based regimen with supplementation of neutral phosphate and calcitriol.

  • Treatment results in a significant improvement in bone mineral density, trabecular bone score and hip geometric parameters.

Open access
L Aliberti Department of Medical Sciences, Section of Endocrinology and Internal Medicine, University of Ferrara, Ferrara, Italy

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I Gagliardi Department of Medical Sciences, Section of Endocrinology and Internal Medicine, University of Ferrara, Ferrara, Italy

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M Pontrelli Department of Medical Sciences, Section of Endocrinology and Internal Medicine, University of Ferrara, Ferrara, Italy

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M C Zatelli Department of Medical Sciences, Section of Endocrinology and Internal Medicine, University of Ferrara, Ferrara, Italy

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M R Ambrosio Department of Medical Sciences, Section of Endocrinology and Internal Medicine, University of Ferrara, Ferrara, Italy

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Summary

Tumour-induced osteomalacia (TIO) is due to an overproduction of fibroblast growth factor 23 (FGF23) by mesenchymal tumours, causing hypophosphatemia, osteomalacia and muscle weakness. TIO is usually cured by tumour resection, but neoplasms may be unidentifiable and unresectable or the patient may refuse surgery. In these cases, medical treatment with oral phosphate and calcitriol is mandatory, but it is not fully effective and it is associated with low compliance. Burosumab, a human MAB against FGF23 employed to treat X-linked hypophosphatemia (XLH), has recently been approved for TIO in the USA. Maximum burosumab dose in XLH is 90 mg administered for 2 weeks; there are no data on clinical efficacy and safety of this dose in TIO. We reported the case of a 73 years old male with multiple non-traumatic fractures, low bone mineral density, pain and reduced independence of activities of daily living. Biochemical evaluation showed hypophosphatemia, high alkaline phosphatase (ALP) and C-terminal telopeptide (CTX) and normal albumin-corrected total calcium and parathyroid hormone. Tubular phosphate reabsorption was low (80%), whereas C-terminal tail of FGF23 (cFGF23) was elevated. A 68Ga-DOTATOC PET was performed, identifying a lesion in the first left rib. The patient refused surgery; therefore, burosumab therapy was started. After 18 months of treatment (maximum dose: 60 mg administered for 2 weeks), plasma phosphate normalized and ALP levels improved (138 U/L). Patient clinical symptoms as well as pain severity and fatigue improved. Neither adverse events nor tumour progression was reported during follow-up except for a painless fracture of the second right rib.

Learning points

  • Our case shows efficacy and safety of burosumab treatment administered every 2 weeks in a tumour-induced osteomalacia (TIO) patient.

  • After 18 months of treatment at a maximum dose of 60 mg every 2 weeks, we found plasma phosphate normalization and ALP reduction as well as improvement in clinical symptoms and fatigue.

  • Neither adverse events nor tumour progression was reported during follow-up, except for a painless fracture of the second right rib.

Open access
Therese Adrian Department of Nephrology, Copenhagen University Hospital – Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, Denmark
Department of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark

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Mads Hornum Department of Nephrology, Copenhagen University Hospital – Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, Denmark
Department of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark

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Filip Krag Knop Department of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
Center for Clinical Metabolic Research, Copenhagen University Hospital – Gentofte Hospital, Hellerup, Denmark
Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Basic Metabolic Research, Faculty of Health and Medical Science, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
Copenhagen University Hospital – Steno Diabetes Center Copenhagen, Herlev, Denmark

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Lise Lotte Gluud Department of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark
Gastro Unit, Medical Division, Copenhagen University Hospital – Amager and Hvidovre Hospital, Hvidovre, Denmark

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Summary

A 72-year-old man with type 2 diabetes volunteered to participate in the control group of a clinical study. The study evaluated non-alcoholic fatty liver disease in patients with kidney disease. The patient was followed at a gastroenterology department due to Crohn’s disease and post-operative bile acid malabsorption. The patient had no symptoms or biochemical findings suggesting liver disease. Surprisingly, a transient elastography (FibroScan®) suggested advanced fibrosis with a median of 16.1 kPa. A liver biopsy showed non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH)-cirrhosis. The diagnosis was only made incidentally and highlights how NASH-cirrhosis may be overlooked due to the lack of symptoms.

Learning points

  • Clinicians treating high-risk populations, including patients with type 2 diabetes and/or components of the metabolic syndrome, should be aware of the frequently occurring co-existence with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and especially non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH).

  • Liver enzymes may be in the normal range even in people with steatosis, NASH, or even cirrhosis.

  • The diagnosis of NAFLD should include evaluation of hepatic fibrosis as this is the most important prognostic factor for liver-related complications and mortality.

  • Guidelines about systematic screening for NAFLD in patients with type 2 diabetes are incongruent.

Open access