Yes, EDS (Ehlers Danlos Syndrome) causes miscarriage in severe cases.
Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS) is a group of rare genetic conditions that affect connective tissue, responsible for providing strength and structure to the skin, blood vessels, joints, and various organs in the entire body, including the reproductive organs.
EDS is a rare condition that is usually caused by a mutation in the Ehlers-Danlos gene that causes the connective tissue to be damaged. Furthermore, in addition to the typical symptoms of tight skin and too mobile joints, persons with EDS may also encounter difficulties during conception and childbirth.
Fertility and EDS
Depending on the kind and degree of the disease, EDS might negatively influence reproductive ability. Some patients may have difficulty conceiving; however, others may not have any problems with conception. An online poll conducted by the Ehlers-Danlos National Foundation found that 43.3 percent of the 1,352 respondents had experienced infertility.
When EDS patients have fertility concerns, assisted reproduction through in vitro fertilization with pre-implantation genetic testing may be a viable alternative. This option should only be considered after a thorough discussion with a genetic counselor, gynecologist, and other healthcare team members about the likelihood of successful implantation, a full-term pregnancy, and any potential complications during pregnancy and childbirth, among other factors.
Pregnancy and the Development of EDS
Women suffering from EDS have a higher incidence of gynecological disorders than the general population, owing to damage to the connective tissue that supports the reproductive organs. Depending on the type of EDS, the severity of the problems may be different. The following are examples of gynecological problems that are frequently reported:
- Menorrhagia (menstrual hemorrhage) (heavy menstrual bleeding)
- Spotting between menstrual periods.
- Severe dysmenorrhea (menstrual cramps) (menstrual cramps)
- Dyspareunia is a state of being unable to think clearly (painful intercourse)
- Severe pelvic discomfort
Complications related to pregnancy have been described in EDS patients, and these include miscarriage, ectopic pregnancies (pregnancy outside of the uterus), and premature birth. Patients with EDS are at a higher risk of having a preterm delivery or having an abortion too late. Breast alterations are frequent during pregnancy as a result of the hormonal changes that occur. As a result, women with EDS may require additional breast support to manage breast alterations and avoid harm due to flexible skin.
The following are the most often reported post-partum problems in EDS patients:
- Intestinal wall or blood vascular rupture are also possible outcomes.
- Delay in the healing of wounds
- Decrease in muscular tone in the uterus (uterine atony)
- Prolapse of the pelvic organs as a result of weakened muscles
- Severe bruising and bleeding
- Thrombosis of the deep veins
- Musculoskeletal problems and injuries
It is usually recommended to have a cesarean section to avoid the additional stress of a vaginal birth on the joints and skin, which can exacerbate the symptoms of EDS.
Pregnancy and obstetric care of EDS
Family counseling is essential in order to comprehend the potential consequences of EDS on pregnancy fully. The result of maintaining a healthy lifestyle and having frequent health checks performed to track the advancement of the pregnancy cannot be overstated. Also advised is that patients work with their healthcare team to build a sound birth plan. A comprehensive plan should include recommendations for how to protect the skin and joints while giving birth. The birth plan must be made available to all caregivers and members of the delivery team, including midwives if applicable, as soon as possible.