Mortality and cause of death in mucopolysaccharidosis type II-a historical review based on data from the Hunter Outcome Survey (HOS).
Mucopolysaccharidosis type II (MPS II or Hunter syndrome) is a progressive, multisystemic disease caused by a deficiency of iduronate-2-sulfatase. Patients with the severe form of the disease have cognitive impairment and typically die in the second decade of life. Patients with the less severe form do not experience significant cognitive involvement and may survive until the fifth or sixth decade of life. We studied the relationship of both severity of MPS II and the time period in which patients died with age at death in 129 patients for whom data were entered retrospectively into HOS (Hunter Outcome Survey), the only large-scale, multinational observational study of patients with MPS II. Median age at death was significantly lower in patients with cognitive involvement compared with those without cognitive involvement (11.7 versus 14.1 years; p = 0.024). These data indicate that cognitive involvement is indicative of more severe disease and lower life expectancy in patients with MPS II. Median age at death was significantly lower in patients who died in or before 1985 compared with those who died after 1985 (11.3 versus 14.1 years; p alpha 0.001). The difference in age at death between patients dying in or before, relative to after, the selected cut-off date of 1985 may reflect improvements in patient identification, care and management over the past two decades. Data from patients who died after 1985 could serve as a control in analyses of the effects of enzyme replacement therapy with idursulfase on mortality in patients with MPS II.