Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS) is a connective tissue disorder, meaning it affects skin, ligaments, tendons and blood vessels. EDS is “generally characterized by joint hypermobility (joints that stretch further than normal), skin hyperextensibility (skin that can be stretched further than normal), and tissue fragility” (The Ehlers-Danlos Society). Ligaments are responsible for connecting bones to other bones, and tendons connect muscles to bones. Both of these structures provide stability throughout our joints and when these tendons and ligaments are lax, such as with EDS, the joints become unstable. This can lead to injury or joint dislocations.
If you or someone you know has EDS, physical therapy is very beneficial. Physical therapists are highly educated and trained to develop and safely execute treatment plans to target strength and stability. In each physical therapy session, your therapist will work with you to strengthen your muscles so structures around the unstable joints are strong enough to protect from hyperextension and dislocation. This helps prevent injury, dislocations and reduces the pain and stress the patient may experience with this disorder.
Patients with EDS sometimes experience other conditions also treatable by physical therapy, such as POTS. Your physical therapist will work with you to develop a personalized treatment plan based on your needs and capabilities.
If you or your child has been diagnosed with EDS call 602-808-8989 today to schedule an appointment.
“I am now more aware of my body, I know when to do soft knees and elbows. I’m a lot stronger because I’ve been doing exercises and strengthening my core. I know that I have to make my muscles really strong so that I don’t hurt myself more because of EDS. My exercises that Lauren taught me will help with all of that.” – E.H.