Ankylosing spondylitis: Causes and symptoms


  • The mechanism of development of ankylosing spondylitis
  • The symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis
  • The risk of ankylosing spondylitis

  • Ankylosing spondylitis (ankylosing spondylitis)It affects mostly men, mostly young. Women are less likely to get sick (the ratio of cases of women and men about 1: 5 - 1: 9). The average Russian Ankylosing spondylitis is sick about 3 people out of every thousand.

    Apparently, ankylosing spondylitis developas a result of latent infections, but does not develop at all, but only those people who have a specific genetic predisposition and certain genetic characteristics, in particular HLA-B27 gene.

    The mechanism of development of ankylosing spondylitis

    In ankylosing spondylitis the inflammation initiallyIt affects the junction of the sacrum and ilium; then spreads to the lumbar spine and "creeping" up around the spine. In the future, the inflammatory process can capture all joints of the body - from the hip to the joints of the fingers.

    Inflammation of the joints in this disease, fortunately, rarely "cruel." In many cases it can be quite easily suppressed by medicines.

    Much worse than that for ankylosing spondylitisis "ossification" ligaments of the spine, its intervertebral joints and discs. There is a gradual process of "fusion" of the vertebrae together, the spine loses its flexibility and mobility. Without proper treatment complete immobility of the spine can occur in a few years, when almost all the vertebrae are fused into a single rigid bone structure. This condition is called "ankilozirovaniya".

    The symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis

    Ankylosing spondylitis: Causes and symptomsThe symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis firstmay resemble a very banal manifestations of osteochondrosis. The patient complains of pain in the lumbar region. Moreover, these pains are often quite modest. They are easily removed using NSAIDs and do not cause the majority of doctors doubt that. "Osteochondrosis in its purest form" Doubts begin later, when the pain is added to the lumbar swelling and tenderness of one or more joints. An experienced physician in this situation should pay attention to the "inflammatory" nature of back pain and joint pain: the pain intensifies during the second half of the night, between three and five o'clock in the morning and subside slightly during the day, especially in the afternoon.

    In addition to the typical rhythm of pain on a possible diagnosisIt indicates a pronounced lumbar morning stiffness, and disappearing for dinner, and the young age of the patient - usually osteochondrosis sick elderly people, and spondylitis disease often begins in the 20 - 30 years.

    In addition to approximately half of the patients at the very onset of the disease can be detected eye inflammation (redness and feeling of "sand in the eyes"), fever and weight loss.

    Still, the main symptom of the disease isincreasing stiffness of the spine and limit mobility of the chest when breathing movements. A sick person is moving, as if instead of a backbone he inserted a stick - to tilt and rotate the patient has the whole body.

    Characteristic appearance of the patient. normal lumbar curvature of the spine disappears in the initial stage of disease, lower back becomes flat and straight. At a later stage, "freezes" strongly hunched thoracic spine - formed the so-called "supplicant posture." the patient's legs when walking are always slightly bent at the knees.

    Such patients in the advanced stage of the diseaseit is difficult to confuse with osteochondrosis sick - especially if the spine defeat combined with inflammation of the joints; and diagnosed at this stage most physicians to easily set. Unfortunately, and to treat such disease has already launched almost useless - too big changes are taking place at this time in the body. Ankylosing spondylitis Treatment should start much earlier, has not yet happened "ossification" of the whole spine and inflamed joints. And this requires, of course, as soon as possible to make the correct diagnosis.

    The risk of ankylosing spondylitis

    Ankylosing spondylitis is dangerous not only because withtime immobilizes the entire spine and joints, but also its complications. Because of these complications is the greatest danger of heart failure and aortic occurring in 20% of patients and is manifested by shortness of breath, pain in the chest and disruption of the heart.

    One-third of patients develop amyloidosis - degeneration of the kidneys, resulting in impaired kidney function.

    Reduced mobility of the chestIt contributes to the development of lung diseases and tuberculosis. In order to prevent the occurrence of such complications, it is necessary to identify, diagnose and treat the disease at the earliest possible time.

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