Why does spondylitis develop?

Spondylitis is a spine condition that generally refers to the inflammation and swelling of the vertebrae in the spine. Most doctors use the term spondylitis to refer to a compilation of arthritic spine conditions that cause the joints and vertebrae of the spine to swell. Because of the complex nature of spondylitis, it is often difficult to determine a specific cause of this spine condition without an MRI or CT scan.

If you suspect you have spondylitis, contact your doctor as soon as possible to schedule a consultation and determine your spine condition. If left untreated, spondylitis can cause deformity of the spine and severely limited mobility. Your doctor may ask you about your symptoms and family history before you are scheduled for an MRI or CT scan. To learn about the causes of spondylitis and the treatments of this condition, read the following article.

Causes and risks of spondylitis

Spondylitis is a complex spine condition because it can be caused by certain factors of spinal arthritis, as well as a side effect of a different spine condition or a symptom of certain diseases. There is no known cause of spondylitis, but many researchers suggest that genetics may play a huge factor in increasing the chance of developing this condition.

Many patients with ankylosing spondylitis are carriers of a specific gene that may be an indicator of an individual’s risk of developing this spine condition. Scientists have developed blood tests in addition to an MRI or CT scan to test an individual for this gene and determine the risk of developing spondylitis.

In addition to genetics, this spine condition largely affects men more than women. It is also predominantly present in individuals ages 17–45. If you have a history of spondylitis in your family, and you suspect that you have this spine condition, schedule a consultation with your doctor to review your symptoms and determine your condition.

Symptoms and treatments for spondylitis

Spondylitis is often present as a side effect of another spine condition, such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, traumatic injury or spinal infection. The symptoms of spondylitis differ depending on the cause and severity of the condition. Generally, individuals will experience the following symptoms caused by spondylitis:

  • Back stiffness
  • Limited range of motion in the back
  • Abnormal spinal curvature
  • Decreased mobility
  • Decreased muscle strength in the legs
  • Chronic pain in the back

Unfortunately, there are no treatments to cure spondylitis. However, there are several treatment options to help relieve the chronic pain associated with spondylitis so you can regain your quality of life.
Laser Spine Institute does not offer treatment options for spondylitis. However, if you have spondylitis, contact our team to help you find alternative treatment options to relieve the pain associated with this condition.