This article contains medical terminology, for a description of Ankylosing Spondylitis in a more easy to read version, see here.
What is Ankylosing Spondylitis?
This progressive inflammatory condition is a chronic disorder that affects the sacroiliac joint, costovertebral joints and intercostal spaces of the axial skeleton. Whilst the condition can develop at any age, the disorder is more common in men in the 20 to 30-year-old age group, varying with severity. The cause is not fully known, however there is evidence of a genetic component with the presence of HLA-B27 antigen in the serum of most patients. Ankylosing spondylitis is also an autoimmune disorder in the group of rhematic spondyloarthopathies including psoriatic arthritis, reactive arthritis, and enteropathic arthritis. As an inflammatory condition, pain and discomfort in the spine is the main symptom, however it is possible to develop other symptoms such as fatigue, fever, weight loss, and uveitis (inflammation in the eye).
As a progressive disorder, the pathophysiology can be seen in stages.
- The vertebral joints become inflamed and painful, starting at the sacroiliac joints and progressing up the spine leading to a characteristic ‘poker back’
- Excess fibrous connective tissue is formed causing fibrosis around the inflamed spine
- Fusion of the joints occur resulting in ankylosis (fixation of the joint).
- Loss of normal spinal curvature leads to the development of kyphosis (excessive outward curvature of the spine).
Ankylosing spondylosis may lead to the development of osteoporosis, which can then further the kyphosis and lead to possible compression fractures in the vertebrae. The calcification of the costovertebral joints can reduce rib movement and lung expansion can be hindered. When the disorder is in the initial stages lower back pain, morning stiffness and radiating pain in the legs are the main symptoms, with relief found through light stretching and mild exercise. As the condition progresses flexion, extension, and rotation of the spine is impaired limiting movement and function.
What are the treatment options?
Treatment is based on what stage the pathophysiology is at, and generally includes the administration of pain and NSAID medications, a daily exercise program, and pain management techniques. Treatment can include surgery if the condition is severe and the spine is unstable.
How can Nubax Trio help?
Nubax Trio can be used to help not only the painful symptoms, but used in conjunction with other therapies may be able to hinder the progression of the disorder. Using Nubax Trio can aid in posture training, preventing the development of kyphosis and promoting correct spinal curvature. Nubax Trio may reduce long term symptoms by maintaining mobility, strengthening back muscles, and increasing range of motion. Axial decompression is particularly effective in treating Ankylosing spondylitis. With Nubax Trio, it is possible to stretch the column and align it with the pelvis and shoulders, which will promote the spine to stay in a correct curvature. With Nubax Trio, treatment is safe and simple. Nubax Trio has made pain relief and treatment easy to achieve in the comfort of your own home. During inflammation flare ups, using back traction may be contra indicated depending on the severity. Always check with a qualified health practitioner for the use of traction in a diagnosed condition.