Background: Joint hypermobility syndrome (JHS) is one of the most
common heritable genetic disorders of connective tissue, characterised by excessive
joint range of motion and the presence of musculoskeletal symptoms. Prevalence
estimates of JHS range from 5% to 18% and vary with gender, age and ethnicity.
JHS is associated with generalised joint laxity, joint instability, motion incoordination,
decreased joint position sense, and musculoskeletal pain. The research
evidence-base for treating lower limb symptoms in JHS is increasing. This
paper outlines a protocol for a systematic review of the evidence for physical and
mechanical treatments for lower limb problems in children with JHS.
Methods/Design: MEDLINE, EMBASE, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled
Trials, PUBMED and CINAHL will be searched for randomised controlled trials and quasirandomised
controlled trials investigating physical and mechanical interventions for lower limb
problems in children with JHS. Two authors will independently screen studies for eligibility for inclusion
and will assess risk of bias of included studies. One author will extract and analyse statistical
data, which will be checked by the second author.
Discussion: The systematic review aims to establish the best-practice use of physical and mechanical
interventions for lower limb complications of JHS in children and to highlight the areas of greatest
need for future research.