Ehlers Danlos Syndrome

Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome(EDS) is a group of disorders that affect connective tissues, which are tissues that support the skin, bones, blood vessels, and other organs. Defects in connective tissues cause the signs and symptoms of Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, which vary from mildly loose joints to life-threatening complications.[i]

There are six different types of EDS, but all types of Ehlers-Danlos syndrome affect the joints and many also affect the skin, features vary by type.   An unusually large range of joint movement (hypermobility) occurs with most forms of Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, particularly the hypermobility type(type III).  Many people with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome have soft, velvety skin that is highly elastic (stretchy) and fragile. Affected individuals tend to bruise easily, and some types of the condition also cause abnormal scarring.[ii]

Physicians propose and studies have shown that EDS and dysautonomia syndromes, such as POTS are associated due to abnormal connective tissue allows excessive amounts of blood to pool in the lower limbs when they stand up.[iii]  This leads to the orthostatic intolerance.  Many POTS patients with EDS have type III.[iv]

[iii] Rowe, P., Barron, D., Calkins, H., Maumenee, I., Tong, P., & Geraghty, M. (1999). Orthostatic intolerance and chronic fatigue syndrome associated with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome☆, ☆☆, ★. The Journal of Pediatrics, 135(4), 494-499. doi: 10.1016/S0022-3476(99)70173-3

[iv]  Grubb, B.P. (2002).  The heterogeneity of symptoms related to dysautonomia.  Sympsium conducted at the meeting of the National Dysautonomia Research Foundation Northwest Ohio Support Group.  Teledo, Ohio.


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