Joint hypermobility syndrome is a benign connective tissue disorder that is also known as Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome Hypermobility Type III. With this condition, joints have an abnormally wide range of motion, which can potentially cause pain, soft tissue injury or joint instability.

People with joint hypermobility symptoms often have unique abilities, including:

  • The thumb can be moved down and back to contact the forearm.
  • The little fingers can be extended back beyond 90 degrees.
  • When standing, the knees have a bowing appearance from the side.
  • When fully extended, the arms bend further than normal (beyond straight).
  • The ability to place hands flat on floor with forward bending and straight knees.

Joint hypermobility syndrome is typically an inherited condition. Hypermobility is also called being double-jointed.

Joint Hypermobility Syndrome

What Are the Symptoms of Joint Hypermobility Syndrome?

As a benign condition, many people with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome Hypermobility Type III present no symptoms and require no treatment. In fact, some athletes like ballet dancers and gymnasts can actually benefit from the extra flexibility!

However, there are still instances where joint hypermobility syndrome can present bothersome symptoms like:

  • Pain or stiffness in the joints
  • Joints that easily dislocate
  • Thin or stretchy skin
  • Clicking joints
  • Fatigue

With joint hypermobility syndrome, there can also be a higher instance of joint dislocation and sprains. Conditions like scoliosis (a curvature of the spine) have a more common presence in people with hypermobile joints, which can lead to back pain.

How Is Joint Hypermobility Syndrome Treated?

If it’s becoming difficult to live with joint hypermobility syndrome, a combination of pain management, physical therapy and controlled exercises can help ease symptoms.

Because joint hypermobility syndrome can lead to an increased risk of injuries, managing the condition may also include treating short-term injuries. Fortunately, as we age and become less flexible, joint hypermobility tends to decrease.


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The percentage of the population that is affected by joint hypermobility syndrome, according to Scientific American.

Managing Joint Pain

If left untreated, symptomatic joint issues can develop into more complex conditions, which is why seeking treatment for problematic joint hypermobility syndrome is recommended.

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Our orthopaedic specialists can evaluate joint hypermobility syndrome and determine the best plan for treatment.

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What is the outlook for a patient with joint hypermobility syndrome?

This condition is considered benign, which means it’s generally harmless. However, those with symptoms may benefit from specific exercises, activity modification and education about the condition.

What causes joint hypermobility syndrome?

This is a hereditary condition. If you have flexible joints, one or both of your parents probably do too!