Ankylosing Spondylitis

Ankylosing Spondylitis is a topic covered in the Washington Manual of Medical Therapeutics.

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Diagnosis

  • Ankylosing spondylitis clinically presents as inflammation and bony ankylosis of the joints and ligaments of the spine and sacroiliac joints.
  • Patients are usually young men who classically describe nighttime low back pain and prolonged morning stiffness, which improves with exercise.
  • Hips and shoulders are the peripheral joints that are most commonly involved. Progressive fusion of the apophyseal joints of the spine occurs in many patients.
  • Bilateral SI joint involvement is considered characteristic of ankylosing spondylitis. In addition, spine radiographs may show evidence of bridging osteophytes or syndesmophytes between vertebral bodies.

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