Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS) national diagnostic service

The Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS) national diagnostic service, also known as the Complex EDS service, is a specialist service for you and your family if you have or are suspected to have a rare type of EDS.

Telephone number: 020 8869 3166
Location: Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome National Diagnostic Service, Northwick Park and St. Mark's Hospitals, Level 8V, Watford Road, Harrow HA1 3UJ

About the Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome service

The Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS) national diagnostic service, also known as the Complex EDS service,  is a specialist service for adults and children who have or are suspected to have a rare type of EDS. We work closely with national and international EDS patient charities and experts to share knowledge and contribute to research. Our service covers England and Scotland. Referrals outside these areas will need local level approval, and we ask that you contact us before making the referral.

Conditions cared for by Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome service

We see people with a suspected or confirmed diagnosis of rare type of EDS. All EDS types have some features in common which can include joint hypermobility, varying degrees of stretchy skin and tissue fragility. Symptoms can range from mild to severe. There are several rare types of EDS including:

  • classical
  • vascular
  • kyphoscoliotic
  • periodontal.

We focus on diagnosing rare types of EDS. 

Conditions not cared for by Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome service

We do not see people with a suspected or confirmed diagnosis of hypermobile EDS or hypermobility spectrum disorder (HSD). We do not offer management for hypermobility. Instead, people with these conditions may find it more useful to see other specialists who can help you with advice about management, such as a local rheumatologist, physiotherapist or a paediatrician. The Hypermobility Service at University College London Hospitals has special funding for these diagnoses.

Information about Ehlers-Danlos syndrome care

Once we accept your referral, we will:

  • send you a letter asking for more information about you
  • arrange a telephone call with our genetic counsellor to gather information before your clinic appointment and discuss your questions or concerns.

If you do not hear from us and it has been more than six weeks since your referral to us, please contact us to check that we have received your referral.

At your appointment, we:

  • will review and discuss your medical history and family history with you
  • ask you to have a physical examination
  • and we may offer you a test, such as a genetic blood test.

After you've had your assessment:

  • if you have a rare type of EDS, we will offer support to help you manage your condition, this may include seeing other specialists 
  • if you do not have a rare type of EDS, you will be discharged from our care and we may recommend more local specialist care to help you manage your condition

Useful resources for EDS

Ehlers-Danlos syndrome service referrals

We accept referrals from NHS specialists in secondary or tertiary care for both adults and children.

We will only accept referrals from GPs or private consultants if the patient has a confirmed molecular diagnosis of a rare EDS type or is a family member of a person with a molecularly confirmed rare type of EDS. Instead GPs can refer patients with a suspicion of an inherited connective tissue disorder or rare type of EDS to their local genetic service.

How to make a referral?

Please include the following information in the referral which can be sent to us at the above address or by email -

  • patient’s contact details
  • a copy of referring clinician’s most recent clinic letter
  • a copy of the family pedigree if available
  • a genetic report if available
  • extra information if you consider your referral to be urgent e.g. in the case of pregnancy

Should the referral not meet our criteria we will recommend other NHS services who can help to manage your condition.