X-linked hypophosphatemia (XLH) is a genetic disease characterized by weakness in the bones and teeth.

Physiotherapy is recommended for both children and adults with XLH to help protect their bones and joints by working with the muscles support them.

What is physiotherapy?

XLH patients have weak bones and joints, and physiotherapy can help reduce pain and improve mobility by strengthening the muscles that support joint function. Physiotherapists work with patients to build and maintain strength, function, and range of motion. They design an exercise routine that is tailored to each patient’s specific needs. In addition to supervised exercises, a physiotherapist will also often assign the patient “homework,” which consists of exercises patients should perform on their own to ensure progress is maintained.

People should begin working with a physiotherapist as soon as possible after being diagnosed with XLH.

How can physiotherapy help XLH patients?

Physiotherapy can help patients manage complications like muscle cramps or weakness caused by the disease. The physiotherapist identifies areas of muscle weakness and works with the patient to keep the muscles as flexible and as strong as possible. He or she can also teach the patient stretching and muscle exercises that can be done at home, and make recommendations for physical education and accommodations at school for school-age patients, and show both children and adults safe and effective ways to exercise that make bone injuries less likely.

Every patient will have unique needs, and each may be affected differently by the disease. Physiotherapists work with individual patients and their families to develop treatment plans customized to their needs.

If orthotic devices such as braces are required, the physiotherapist will work with the patient’s care team to find the right type of device to ensure that the patient maintains as much mobility as possible for as long as possible.

Depending on the patient’s specific needs, physiotherapists can help increase range of motion and muscle strength and improve daily function, gait, and posture.


Last updated: Jan. 3, 2020


XLH News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.