Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (AKA Hypermobility Syndrome) is a group of inherited connective tissue disorders, caused by a defect in the synthesis of collagen. (Collagen in connective tissue helps tissues to resist deformation.) Clinically, this syndrome results in ligamentous laxity which, in turn, leads to mal-alignment of the weight bearing joints.
The severity of Ehlers-Danlos syndrome can vary from mild to life-threatening. There is no cure of this syndrome. However, some success has been reported using Prolotherapy and surgical stabilizing procedures (e.g., subtalar joint implant prosthesis):
Prolotherapy involves injecting a sclerosing solution at the site where the ligament attaches to the bone. In theory, this strengthens the collagenous fibers within the ligament where it attaches to the bone. A Cochrane review of the medical literature (2004), using prolotherapy for chronic low back pain, reported inconclusive and conflicting evidence on the effectiveness of therapy.
Corrective surgery has been used to help stabilize weight bearing joints within the lower extremity (subtalar, ankle and knee joints). However, surgery is not indicated in patients having either the Rothbarts Foot structure or the PreClinical Clubfoot Deformity.
Grading Ligamentous Laxity
Figure 1 - Determining the Beighton Score. Beighton's modification of the
Carter and Wilkinson scoring system.
The Beighton Score is a useful screening (guide) technique to help determine if the patient exhibits ligamentous laxity:
Interpretation of Results
Carter C, Wilkinson J. Persistent joint laxity and congenital dislocation of the hip. J Bone Joint Surg (Br) 1964;46(1):65.
Knight I. (2011). A Guide to Living with Hypermobility Syndrome: Bending Without Breaking. Jessica Kingsley Publishers, London