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Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS)

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The Ehlers Danlos Syndromes (EDS) is a group of hereditary connective tissue disorders that primarily affect the skin and joints. Connective tissue provides support to many parts of body like skin, muscles, and ligaments. People with EDS may have fragile skin or unstable joints. 

About 1 in every 20,000 babies is born with EDS. It can be inherited in an autosomal dominant, autosomal recessive, or X-linked recessive manner.

NOTE:  The types of EDS were reviewed and new classifications and criteria were published in March of 2017. These pages reflect those changes.

There are 13 recognized types of EDS in the new classification. The new names include a descriptive name followed by Ehlers-Danlos syndrome:

  • The most common type is Hypermobile EDS (hEDS), formerly known as Type III;
  • Followed by Classical EDS (cEDS), formerly known as Type I, and
  • Vascular EDS (vEDS), formerly known as Type IV.

The types are distinct from each other not only in their genetic causes, but also in their symptoms. It is important to know which type has been diagnosed in the child. The type will hold true in families. This means that if one member of the family has Hypermobile EDS, the other members who have the condition will have that type, not another type. Within each type, the severity of the symptoms can vary between individuals even in the same family.

Learn more about the physical characteristics and/or symptoms of Ehlers-Danlos syndrome.


This information was last updated in May, 2017.