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What is Hypermobility?

“Hypermobility is the term used to describe the ability to move joints beyond the normal range of movement. Joint hypermobility is common in the general population. It may be present in just a few joints or it may be widespread. It is most common in childhood and adolescence, in females, and Asian and Afro-Caribbean races. It tends to lessen with age. In many people, joint hypermobility is of no medical consequence and commonly does not give rise to symptoms. Hypermobility can even be considered an advantage, for example, athletes, gymnasts, dancers, and musicians might specifically be selected because of their extra range of movement. 

For a small percentage of the population, instead of being advantageous, hypermobility may be associated with joint and ligament injuries, pain, fatigue, and other symptoms. Hypermobility can also be a sign of a more serious underlying condition, which are often passed down through the generations.”(1/ Hakim A.J.).

“Experts estimate that up to 10% of the general population may have some degree of hypermobility, with women affected about three times more often than men. Most hypermobile people do not develop any problems from their loose joints, but some suffer chronic pain and other symptoms.” (2/ Pocinki A.)The exact cause(s) of joint hypermobility is unknown; however, various genetic mutations in one or more of the components that help build our connective tissues may result in loose joints. Research suggests that both genetic and epigenetic factors play a role in the variability of signs and symptoms associated with joint hypermobility. These indicators fall somewhere along a vast spectrum in presentation and include the severity of issues experienced by some people with joint hypermobility.

 

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