The World of
More than 125 million Amercians are suffering.
These conditions can cause a world of pain.
Be sure you know the cautions and side effects.
Finding help is not always simple for those in pain.
These tips can help prevent a lifetime of pain.
Up-to-date news on pain-related issues.
Ankylosing SpondylitisAnkylosing spondylitis (AS) is a chronic inflammatory disease that affects the joints between the vertebrae of the spine, and the joints between the spine and the pelvis. It eventually causes the affected vertebrae to fuse or grow together.
The first sign of the disease is intermittent hip and/or lower-back pain that is worse at night, in the morning, or after inactivity. Back pain begins in the sacroiliac joint (between the pelvis and the spine) and may progress to include the lumbar (lower back) area and the chest area of the spine. About 0.21% of Americans over age 15 are affected.
The pain may be eased by bending over. This is due to limited expansion of the chest which occurs because of the involvement of the joints between the ribs.
When the Disease Strikes
A physical examination and characteristic symptoms are indicative of limited spine motion or chest expansion.
Tests may include:
Surgery is done if pain or joint damage is severe.
Exercise can help improve posture and breathing.
Lying flat on the back at night can help maintain normal posture.
The course of ankylosing spondylitis is unpredictable. Remissions and relapses may occur at any stage. Most people are able to function unless the hips are severely involved.
If you have symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis or if you have ankylosing spondylitis and new symptoms develop during treatment.
Prevention and Treatment
There is no known prevention. Knowing the risk factors helps with early detection and treatment.
OrganizationsSpondylitis Association of America - Latest news, research, support group, interactive bulletin board, books, video and audio tapes.
National Ankylosing Spondylitis Society - United Kingdom's organization for information, exercises, organizations, books, video and audio tapes (extra charge for mailing out of country).
Arthritis Guide Addresses AS Grants and why AS is often misdiagnosed.
Ankylosing Spondylitis International Foundation - Explains disease, links to national organizations, medical research, information, guide to setting up new group.
Healing With Nutrition - Deals especially with nutrition and juvenile AS.
Kick.as Organization - Membership of over 2,000 people from all over the globe leads to exceptional forums.