Do People with Ehlers Danlos have to wear leg braces?

Yes, a lot of people with Ehlers Danlos will eventually have to wear leg braces depending upon EDS severity.

Joint hypermobility, an increased risk of joint dislocations, muscle weakness and fatigue, poor coordination, gait abnormalities, and postural issues are all symptoms of Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS). Their capacity to carry out daily tasks may be hindered as a result of these symptoms.

EDS is frequently misdiagnosed or not identified, which may be very stressful for both the patient and the physician and other caregivers. Despite this, there is still a lot that can be done to help EDS patients. The musculoskeletal specialist’s role in EDS patient care (e.g., orthopaedic surgeon, physiatrist, rehabilitation medicine expert, rheumatologist) is to help discover the aetiology of the patient’s complaints and to prescribe treatment based on the specific musculoskeletal diagnosis or diagnoses. The physician must grasp the circumstances in which the joint problem occurs and the specific needs and expectations of each patient. This necessitates a detailed awareness of the physical manifestations of EDS and a detailed grasp of the pathophysiology of other painful illnesses that create comparable, overlapping symptoms and a comprehension of how these issues affect the individual being treated.

When your doctor/physician-diagnosed EDS type and its stage (mild, moderate, advanced), they recommend some physical aid instruments such as multiple types of braces, straps and locks. These EDS aids and adaptations are required to maintain patient’s independence and free will.

The safety aspect of leg braces in EDS patients:

Leg braces are supports to be worn when you have pain in your leg. Some people use them to prevent leg injuries due to weakness in EDS. Metal, foam, plastic, or elastic material and straps are used to make braces and the different locks. They are available in a variety of sizes, colours, and designs.

Some doctors will advise you to wear a brace if you have knee limb pain. Others, though, do not believe it is a good idea. It may cause more harm than good if not adjusted correctly. Scientific study has also failed to provide a clear solution. Always consult with your doctor to determine what is best for you.

There are many aids and adaptive recommendations to reduce EDS symptoms, such as:

1.     Orthotic devices

Muscle weakness and contractures, joint difficulties, and scoliosis are all addressed by orthotic devices. Splints, locks and braces, for example, can help protect joints and knees while also making walking easier.

Your doctor may advise you to buy an orthotic brace fastener/lock (To keep orthotic devices firmly). But remember, most common straps on leg braces become loose after a while, which becomes a safety issue (leads to injury too) but using locking straps such as Sur-Lock on your braces will assure you a tight-fitting secure brace that doesn’t come loose.

WHY Sur-LOCK IS UNIQUE

Sur-LOCK is unusual in that it has a dual locking end that keeps your fastener LOCKED in place from the moment you secure it in the morning until you remove it at night. Sur-LOCK fasteners are also made to keep your brace fasteners in pristine condition when they’re not in use. Sur-LOCK’s enhances protection, comfort, and performance.

Some local brace fasteners wear out very quickly or stretch to huge amount due to pressure which lead to economic loss and pain. So always select the best quality leg brace fastener/lock such as Sur-LOCK

2.     Mobility devices

Some patients with EDS may require specialized mobility devices, such as a wheelchair or a scooter, and a walker, crutches or a cane for mobility along with special straps such as a sur-lock strap. However, when walking with a cane or crutch, care should be made to ensure that joints and other regions of the body affected by the condition are not harmed by shifting weight.

Gait trainers and posture control walkers can assist people with gait, and postural control issues move more safely and improve postural alignment.

3.     Utensils for eating and writing

There are modified eating and writing utensils available, such as those with different grips, different size and different weights. These can aid in the reduction of stress on the tiny joints of the fingers and hands.

4.     Adaptations for the home

  • Grab rails and handrails in bathrooms, toilets, stairwells, and along walls can provide support and lessen the danger of falls.
  • Doorknob adapters might make it easier for patients to open doors.
  • A modified sleeping surface, viscoelastic foam mattresses, such as an air mattress, or pillow mattress, can help relieve pain and improve sleep quality.

5.     Adaptations in the classroom or at work

  • Patients with EDS may benefit from a chair with arms to support their upper body, as well as a height-adjustable chair and desk. Padding for the seat and back of the chair can also help.
  • Bean bags can be used in group activities at school where pupils are asked to sit on the floor.
  • A programmed gadget that uses speech to type can be beneficial if a person’s wrists and fingers are significantly hindered.

Other adaptations can also be beneficial, such as:

  • Finger joints can be taped to protect them from dislocations.
  • Custom-made ankle-foot orthotics can stabilize the leg, ankle, and foot below the knee with Sur-locking straps. Knee-ankle-foot orthotics cover the knee as well as the ankle, foot, and leg, assisting in joint stabilization.
  • Children(young) with EDS who have flexible flat feet or difficulty bearing their weight may require customized orthotics and comfortable, supportive footwear. Cushioning for the heel and sole is very crucial here.
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