- Joint pain
- Flat feet
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- Easy bruising
- Minor injuries turning into gaping wounds
- Slow and poor wound healing
- Difficulty suturing skin because skin tends to tear
- Skin scarring from wounds or stretching
- Fleshy outgrowths on top of scars
- Calcified nodules under the skin
- Increased risk of surgical complications
Eyes, such as:
- Epicanthic fold—fold of skin on either side of the nose may cover the inner corner of the eye, which is common in children with EDS
- Fragile sclera—the white outer coat of the eyeball
- Hole in the globe of the eye—rare
- Lung—due to loss of normal elastic tissue
- Bones and muscles—such as chronic pain
- Blood vessels—weak tissue can lead to aortic aneurysms and rupture of blood vessels
- Blood clotting—can lead to easy bruising and bleeding
- Heart valves—such as mitral valve prolapse
- Gums—bleeding and diseases
Gastrointestinal system, such as:
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Pregnancy, such as:
- Premature birth
- Early rupture of membranes
- Bleeding during pregnancy and excessive bleeding during or after childbirth
- Uterine rupture
- Higher complications from procedures
- Muscles—low muscle tone with delayed motor development
- Skin biopsy—to look for abnormalities in the connective tissue
- Detection of specific biochemical defects—available for certain types of EDS
Treatment of Symptoms
- Vitamin C supplements may be helpful in certain subtypes of EDS. It may help to decrease skin bruising and improve wound healing.
- Special care will be taken when repairing skin wounds. This may help to prevent or decrease scarring.
- Medication may help control pain.
- Surgery may be done to repair joint damage.
Treatment to Reduce the Risk of Harm
- Wear joint braces.
- Do muscle strengthening exercises.
- Consider physical therapy to help strengthen muscles and joints.
- Wear sunscreen daily.
- Avoid activities that may cause injury, bruising, or over-extending your joints.
- Children may be asked to wear protective gear during activity.
- Talk to your doctor about possible pregnancy complications.
Ehlers-Danlos National Foundation http://www.ednf.org
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases http://www.niams.nih.gov
The Arthritis Society http://www.arthritis.ca
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca
Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://dynamed.ebscohost.com/about/about-us. Updated June 5, 2012. Accessed August 14, 2013.
Questions and Answers about Heritable Disorders of Connective Tissue. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases website. Available at: http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health%5FInfo/Connective%5FTissue/default.asp. Accessed August 14, 2013.
What is Ehlers-Danlos syndrome? Ehlers-Danlos Foundation website. Available at: http://www.ednf.org/index.php?option=com%5Fcontent&task=view&id=2202&Itemid=88889278. Accessed August 14, 2013.
- Reviewer: Michael Woods, MD
- Review Date: 08/2013 -
- Update Date: 05/11/2013 -