Five signs that you may need to start ankylosing spondylitis treatment
Ankylosing spondylitis treatment is designed to address the most common type of spondyloarthritis. The term “spondyloarthritis” refers to a group of related conditions that often cause joint inflammation, particularly in the spine and pelvis. Usually, ankylosing spondylitis develops very slowly. Its hallmark symptom is back pain that improves with physical activity and worsens with rest. For instance, you might notice spinal joint stiffness that is present when you wake up in the morning but gradually subsides as you move about during the day.
While this chronic condition cannot be reversed or cured, many people experience only mild symptoms that can be well managed with conservative (nonsurgical) ankylosing spondylitis treatment. Typically, a painful episode will be followed by a period of remission, during which the discomfort goes away, only to return sometime later. Conservative therapies can help keep the symptoms under control when they are present.
When to start ankylosing spondylitis treatment
If you’ve been diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis, a physician can help you find ways to manage your symptoms and enhance your quality of life. In general, you should seek professional advice regarding ankylosing spondylitis treatment right away if you notice any of the following signs:
- Shortness of breath or tightness in your chest, which could indicate that there is inflammation around your ribs
- A hunched-forward posture that affects your mobility, which could result if bone spurs have formed and caused your spinal bones to begin to fuse together (a condition known as kyphosis)
- Eye pain, redness, blurred vision, floaters or light sensitivity, which may be signs of uveitis (another type of spondyloarthritis)
- Digestive issues, including abdominal pain and diarrhea, which could result from an inflammatory bowel condition like ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease
- Severe pain in another joint, such as a shoulder, elbow, wrist, hip, knee, ankle or heel, which may be related to enthesitis (inflammation around a site where a ligament or tendon attaches to a bone)
If you need help finding ankylosing spondylitis treatment
At Laser Spine Institute, we do not treat ankylosing spondylitis with minimally invasive spine surgery. However, our care team can help you find appropriate ankylosing spondylitis treatment options, either conservative or surgical, to help relieve some of your discomfort.