Ehlers – Danlos Syndrome and Dentistry
What is Ehlers – Danlos Syndrome?
I remember, it seems such a long time ago, when I first came across an EDS patient He attended the oral surgery department in the old Dublin dental hospital with a jaw problem. Of course, the consultant at that time did what all experts do – he asked the registrar to research it while the patient waited in the chair!
This took some time as the library was across the road, but it gave our hollow minds a chance to ask him lots of questions. Rumour quickly spread that he was to be a finals patient. As it turned out, he was not selected. The professors could not ask questions they themselves could not answer. I don’t remember what treatment, if any, he received, but I never saw him again. I hope that life has been kind to him.
Fast forward 20 years and we are still none the wiser. Every so often, this condition grabs the public’s attention. Nicola Peate made international headlines while attempting to eat a hamburger.
I managed to track down the Irish E.D.S support group and the fantastic work that they do in increasing the public’s awareness of this condition. https://www.facebook.com/
Ehlers – Danlos syndrome
The prevalence of the condition varies between 1:10,0000 and 1:150,000.In Ireland , figures are scarce. According to Natalie Murphy, chairperson of the Irish EDS support group, she estimates that there may be 916 in the country. A new survey is pending.
- Tendency to fracture
- Abnormal root structure
- Enamel Hypoplasia
- High, narrow palate
- Dental crowding
- Gingival hyperplasia
- Gum recession
- Advanced and severe periodontitis
1. A tendency to excessive bleeding after extraction
2. Reduced healing
3. Extremely delicate tissues.
4. Neuropathic pain
5. Reduced response to local anaesthetic
6. Low blood pressure or increased heart rate
7. Sutures not holding
In my next article I will discuss what precautions a dentist should take and what helpful advice an EDS patient can follow to improve their oral health.