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Diseases

Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

Ankylosing spondylitis

*

* Not a rare disease

Other Names for this Disease
  • Ankylosing spondyloarthritis
  • Bechterew syndrome
  • Marie-Strumpell spondylitis
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.

Overview

Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is a type of chronic inflammatory arthritis that mainly affects the spine. It usually begins with inflammation of the joints between the pelvic bones and spine, gradually spreading to the joints between the vertebrae. Signs and symptoms usually begin in adolescence or early adulthood and may include back pain and stiffness. Back movement gradually becomes more limited as the vertebrae fuse together.[1] The condition may also affect the shoulders; ribs; hips; knees; and feet; as well as the eyes; bowel; and very rarely, the heart and lungs.[2] AS is likely caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors; variations in several genes are thought to affect the risk to develop AS.[1] In most cases, treatment involves exercise and medications to relieve pain and inflammation.[2]
Last updated: 2/9/2015

References

  1. Ankylosing spondylitis. Genetics Home Reference. September, 2014; http://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/condition/ankylosing-spondylitis. Accessed 2/9/2015.
  2. What Is Ankylosing Spondylitis?. NIAMS. April, 2011; http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Ankylosing_Spondylitis/ankylosing_spondylitis_ff.asp. Accessed 2/9/2015.
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Basic Information

  • Genetics Home Reference (GHR) contains information on Ankylosing spondylitis. This website is maintained by the National Library of Medicine.
  • MayoClinic.com provides information about ankylosing spondylitis. Click on the link above to access this information.
  • MedlinePlus was designed by the National Library of Medicine to help you research your health questions, and it provides more information about this topic.
  • The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) support research into the causes, treatment, and prevention of arthritis and musculoskeletal and skin diseases, the training of basic and clinical scientists to carry out this research, and the dissemination of information on research progress in these diseases. Click on the link to view information on this topic.
  • The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) is a federation of more than 130 nonprofit voluntary health organizations serving people with rare disorders. Click on the link to view information on this topic.

In Depth Information

  • Medscape Reference provides information on this topic. You may need to register to view the medical textbook, but registration is free.
  • Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) is a catalog of human genes and genetic disorders. Each entry has a summary of related medical articles. It is meant for health care professionals and researchers. OMIM is maintained by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 
  • Orphanet is a European reference portal for information on rare diseases and orphan drugs.  Access to this database is free of charge.
  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Ankylosing spondylitis. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.
Other Names for this Disease
  • Ankylosing spondyloarthritis
  • Bechterew syndrome
  • Marie-Strumpell spondylitis
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.