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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.

Treatment

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How might ankylosing spondylitis be treated?

The main goal of treatment for people with ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is to maximize long-term quality of life. This may involve easing symptoms of pain and stiffness; retaining function; preventing complications (such as contractures); and minimizing the effects of associated conditions.[1]

Education, exercise, and medications are all very important in managing AS. An exercise program is recommended for all affected people, and some may need individual physical therapy. Affected people are encouraged to speak with their health care provider before instituting any changes to an exercise regime. Video demonstrations of exercises tailored for ankylosing spondylitis are available for viewing through the National Ankylosing Spondylitis Society in the UK.

Medications may include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs); pain relievers; sulfasalazine; and anti-tumor necrosis factor drugs. Steroid injections may be helpful for some people. Most people don't need surgery, but it may be indicated when there is severe, persistent pain or severe limitation in mobility and quality of life. Smoking creates additional problems for people with AS, so affected people who smoke should quit.[1]

More detailed information about the treatment of ankylosing spondylitis is available on Medscape's Web site. You may need to register to view the article, but registration is free.
Last updated: 9/3/2015

References
  1. David T Yu. Assessment and treatment of ankylosing spondylitis in adults. UpToDate. Waltham, MA: UpToDate; December 18, 2014; Accessed 2/9/2015.


Clinical Trials & Research for this Disease

  • ClinicalTrials.gov lists trials that are studying or have studied Ankylosing spondylitis. Click on the link to go to ClinicalTrials.gov to read descriptions of these studies.
  • The Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tool (RePORT) provides access to reports, data, and analyses of research activities at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), including information on NIH expenditures and the results of NIH-supported research. Although these projects may not conduct studies on humans, you may want to contact the investigators to learn more. To search for studies, enter the disease name in the "Text Search" box. Then click "Submit Query".
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.