The Truth About Ehlers Danlos Syndrome

ehlers danlos syndrome

The pain is all in your head. You’re just  clumsy These are just a few of the misconceptions about people living with Ehlers Danlos Syndrome.

Most myths about a condition or disease tend to stem from a lack of knowledge and understanding. This seems to be true with EDS as well. As with many “under researched” conditions there is a myth for every truth.

As May is National EDS Awareness Month we thought it would be a good time to dispel some of the most common misconceptions about EDS.

Myth & Facts

Here are some common myths and facts about EDS:

Myth: “Ehlers-Danlos is only a muscle and joint disorder

Fact: EDS is characterized by a genetic defect in connective tissues that make up 21% of the body. Since connective tissues support many organs and other body parts and tissues- it can be a multi-system disorder depending on the type of EDS.

Myth: “This pain you’re feeling… is all in your head.”

Fact: There is pain associated with EDS. Individuals with EDS experience both chronic and acute pain. With no major medical trauma evident other than their hypermobility- some physicians contribute the pain, to hormones, stress, or that it has to be in their heads. Pain management can be challenging for EDS sufferers.

Myth: “You’re just clumsy, that’s all.”

Fact: Many with EDS report that they were clumsy as children and some still are today. They seem to get hurt very easily. EDS sufferers illustrate a higher incidence of foot and ankle problems. Some common problems reported due to hypermobility- include ankle instability, clubfeet and a flat arch.

Myth: “You don’t have stretchy skin, so you can’t have EDS.”

Fact: Hyper-elastic skin is an indicator for classic types of EDS, but is not typical for all types. Hypermobility, where various joints of the body move beyond what is considered to be normal, is a more common trait for all forms of EDS.

Myth: “You don’t “look” like you have EDS.”

Fact: You don’t have to be tall and thin in order to have EDS nor do you have to have a specific skin color. Those who have EDS can vary in height, weight and ethnic backgrounds. There is no known ethnic, racial, geographic or other population trait that appears to be predisposed to EDS.

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For more information or to find an EDS support community:

The Ehlers-Danlos National Foundation

Centers for Ehlers Danlos Syndrome Alliance

Arthritis Foundation Disease Center

Ehlers- Danlos National Foundation Support Community

Ehlers- Danlos Syndrome Support Group


Our blogs are presented for informational purposes only and are not to be considered medical advice. Because your condition is unique to you, it is recommended that you consult with your health care provider before attempting any medical or therapeutic intervention. We are happy to answer questions or comments pertaining to products mentioned in our blogs, however, we cannot provide a diagnosis or medical advice.


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