Hypermobility Spectrum Disorder

Hypermobility Spectrum Disorder (HSD) is a 'hereditary connective tissue disorder' caused by faulty collagen. Collagen is the 'glue' of the body which keeps joints and organs stick together.
For most people being hypermobile isn't a problem and can be quite an advantage, such as for athletes, gymnasts and dancers. But for a small percentage of people, like myself it can be very problematic.

HSD as the name suggests is a spectrum disorder which can range from mild difficulties to more severe difficulties (no just with hypermobility but how it affects other parts of the body). HSD lead onto hypermobile Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (hEDS) based upon symptoms. 

Joint hypermobiltiy refers to the joints ability to move beyond normal limits. This is tested using the Beighton Score in which each joint that is classified as being hypermobile a point is given. Their are 9 "points" in total. An alternative is the 5 point questionnaire.

HSD and hEDS can be equal in severity, but more importantly, both need similar management, validation, and care. - 'What is HSD': The Ehlers-Danlos Society


HSD and hEDS are very common in terms of symptoms.
From lax joints reoccurring subluxed/dislocated joints; easy bruising, unusual scarring and stretch marks; chronic pain and fatigue; co-morbidities such as dysautonomia including POTS; organ complications such as to the cardiac, gastro and urology; local anaesthetic having no or a reduced effect and many more.


This is just the same as you would treat hEDS. This may include pain management, physiotherapy, occupational therapy snd self-management.

2017 New Classification

In 2017 EDS was re-categorised and 13 subtypes of EDS was developed as well as HSD. Apart from hEDS all the other types of EDS had a genetic marker so with hEDS they really really narrowed down the criteria for getting diagnosed with hEDS in the hope that those diagnosed with hEDS after the 2017 reclassification would help find a genetic marker to improve the diagnosing of hEDS and for all others the diagnosis given would be HSD. 
Despite this the protocols, treatments etc between HSD and hEDS remain the same.
All those with EDS Type 3 or EDS Hypermobility Type their diagnosis would remain the same despite some would now not be classed as having EDS but instead have HSD.

Helpful Links

Blog posts about HSD

Guest posts about HSD/EDS

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