Sir, After reading the article on ‘Articular hypermobility in Icelandic 12‐yr‐olds’ [1], I wish to report our experience in schoolchildren of a single district of Barcelona [2].

In 1998 we analysed a random sample of 112 schoolchildren (50 boys, 62 girls; age range 4–7 yr) from three state schools in the district, seen prospectively and consecutively between September 1997 and June 1998. The technique of samples by conglomerates was used for sample selection; the classroom was the conglomerate. All patients fulfilled a minimum of four points of the nine accepted for the diagnosis of articular hypermobility proposed by Beighton [3]. The χ2 test with the Yates and Fisher correction was used for the analysis of quantitative variables; differences were considered statistically significant at P < 0.05. Of the 50 children studied, 21 boys (42%) were lax, as were 38 girls (61.29%) (Table 1).

We observed a greater prevalence of articular hypermobility in girls than in boys (P = 0.04), and particularly in 5‐yr‐old girls (P = 0.045). These results confirm those obtained by other authors [4]. It is difficult to explain why girls are more lax than boys; studies in the literature are lacking in this respect. Hypermobility may persist longer in girls than in boys owing to a possible hormonal factor.

Table 1.

Prevalence of articular hypermobility

 Girls (n = 62)
 

 
Boys (n = 50)
 

 
Age (yr)
 
AH
 
No AH
 
AH
 
No AH
 
11 10  6 10 
10  2  4  7 
10  7  9  6 
 7  5  2  6 
Total 38 24 21 29 
 Girls (n = 62)
 

 
Boys (n = 50)
 

 
Age (yr)
 
AH
 
No AH
 
AH
 
No AH
 
11 10  6 10 
10  2  4  7 
10  7  9  6 
 7  5  2  6 
Total 38 24 21 29 

AH, articular hypermobility.

Correspondence to: J. C. Duró, Hospital de la Esperanza, St Josep de la Muntanya 12, E‐08024 Barcelona, Spain

References

1
Qvindesland A, Jónsson H. Articular hypermobility in Icelandic 12‐year‐olds.
Rheumatology
 
1999
;
38
:
1014
–6.
2
Duró JC, Vega E. Prevalencia de laxitud articular en un distrito escolar de Barcelona.
Acta Pediatr Esp
 
1998
;
56
:
494
–5.
3
Beighton PH, Solomon L, Soskolne CL. Articular mobility in an African population.
Ann Rheum Dis
 
1973
;
32
:
413
–8.
4
Arroyo IL, Brewer EJ, Giannin E. Arthritis/arthralgia and hypermobility of the joints in school children.
J Rheumatol
 
1998
;
15
:
978
–80.

Comments

0 Comments