I have some type of hypermobility (sometimes colloquially referred to as “double-jointedness”), which make the osteoarthritis a bit more problematic. Currently I have no diagnosis of what sort of problem this is, aside from the doctor saying that “Yes, you’re hypermobile.” (Well, duh.)
At the risk of sounding odd, I didn’t even realise that I was hypermobile until someone pointed it out to me. I’ve always heard that it’s good to be flexible, and never really had any basis for comparison. But as you can see, I am bendier than the average person. (I also have poor proprioception and bruise easily, hence the dark blodges in the photographs.)
Things like the TMJ (Temporo-mandibular Joint disorder), uterine prolapse, repeated shoulder subluxations, crackly joints, stretchy skin, or even local anesthetic not lasting very long may also be related to hypermobility, but I don’t know that for sure. One of my kids is also rather bendy, so I presume there is a genetic factor to this. See The Hypermobility Syndrome Association (UK) for more information on hypermobility. This link will take you to other posts of mine dealing with hypermobility.
In any regard, here are some pictures so you can better identify possible hypermobility problems. I should note that you don’t necessarily have to be as bendy as I am — ask your doctor; I’m not licensed to practice medicine, nor do I play one on screen.
Natural finger hyperextension;
Finger hyperflexion with light pressure (palm downwards).
My fingers are also bendable sideways, even over the back of my hand.
One radiologist said I might have arachnodactily because I have such long fingers, and can grasp my wrists like so. (My fingers don’t really look that long in the picture because they’re curled, but they’re so long that I have to buy men’s gloves because women’s gloves are too small for me.)
My wrist is also over-mobile; I can bend my thumb to touch my arm (it’s uncomfortable, but not extremely painful); this is one of the Beighton indicators for hypermobility,
So is forward flexion, being able to put one’s hands flat on the floor, even with the knees locked.
Yet another indicator is elbow or knee joints that bend further backwards than normal (my elbow is on the underside in this picture).
Beyond the usual hypermobility indicators, I might have some unusual arm rotation; my palm is down, but the inside of my elbow is facing up.
Likewise, my ankles rotate enough that I can turn the soles of my feet sideways, and even put them together (like praying hands) even when my knees are locked
Then there’s the stretchy skin bit, but I won’t go into much detail on that because it grosses people out.