Hypermobility Syndrome is a condition in which hypermobile joints develop in different parts of the body due to genetic or other reasons.
Hypermobile joints are those joints that move beyond the normal range of motion with little effort. In other words, hypermobility syndrome occurs when the connective tissue in the body, such as ligaments are over flexible allowing them to stretch to abnormal limits.
The most common joints that fall in this category include elbows, wrists, fingers and knees. Hypermobility syndrome is one of the most common source of joint or muscle complaints in children and young adults. It is generally estimated that 10-15% of normal children have the hypermobility syndrome.
A concept known as the Beighton score is normally used for assessment of the hypermobility syndrome.
Signs of Hypermobility Syndrome
Prominent symptoms of the hypermobility syndrome include pains in knees, finger, hips and elbows. Besides, an individual with hypermobility syndrome will normally reflect one or more of the below signs and symptoms:
· The wrist and thumb can be moved downward in a manner that the thumb touches the forearm.
· The little fingers can be extended back over 90 degrees.
· When standing, the knees are abnormally bowed backward when viewed from the side.
· When fully extended, the arms bend further than normal.
· When bending at the waist, with the knees straight, the child or adult can put his or her palms flat on the floor.
Hypermobility syndrome is widely accepted as being congenital .i.e. the child gets the hypermobile joints in his genes. Main causative factors include:
· Ehlers-Danlos syndrome
· Down syndrome
· Marfan syndrome
· Morquio syndrome
· Cleidocranial dysostosis
Other factors that might explain the existence of hypermobility syndrome include:
· the shape of the ends of the bones
· weak or stretched ligaments caused by problems with collagen and other proteins
· the tone of your muscles
· the individual’s sense of joint movement
The treatment plan is specifically desgined for each child or young adult, based on his or her overall health, medical history, severity of pain or discomfort and other symptoms. The normal parts of treatment include:
Guided exercise programs can be extremely helpful in helping to reduce flexibility and increase muscle strength to help prevent future injury. Activities such as swimming, walking and skating help considerably in improving the joint strength.
Besides, obesity should be avoided at all costs and the individual should remain active.
Various joint protection techniques should be employed to prevent overstretching of joints, such as avoid sitting in cross-legged with both knees bent, wearing shoes with good arch supports and the like.
Since joint looseness is the main problem rather than inflammation, medicines are normally of little help. However, the joint discomfort after activity can be reduced with over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medicines, such as ibuprofen.