Ankylosing spondylitis is an inflammatory disease that, over time, can cause some of the vertebrae in your spine to fuse. This fusing makes the spine less flexible and can result in a hunched-forward posture. If ribs are affected, it can be difficult to breathe deeply.
Ankylosing spondylitis affects men more often than women. Signs and symptoms typically begin in early adulthood. Inflammation also can occur in other parts of your body — most commonly, your eyes.
There is no cure for ankylosing spondylitis, but treatments can lessen your symptoms and possibly slow progression of the disease.
Nov. 01, 2016
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- Overview of ankylosing spondylitis. Spondylitis Association of America. http://www.spondylitis.org/Learn-About-Spondylitis/Ankylosing-Spondylitis. Accessed Aug. 25, 2016.
- Ward MM, et al. American College of Rheumatology/Spondylitis Association of America/Spondyloarthritis Research and Treatment Network 2015 recommendations for the treatment of ankylosing spondylitis and nonradiographic axial spondyloarthritis. Arthritis Care & Research. 2016;68:151.