What is ankylosing spondylitis?
Ankylosing spondylitis is a chronic (long-term) inflammatory disease. It is a form of arthritis and results in inflammation of the spinal joints, most commonly in the lower back. The joints at the base of the spine, where the spine meets the pelvis, are also affected. Back pain that does not get better with rest, stiffness and inflammation are symptoms often seen with this disease. Over time, ankylosing spondylitis can cause the affected spinal bones to fuse together. This can limit the movement and flexibility of the spine and may affect posture.
Ankylosing spondylitis cannot be prevented, but early recognition of symptoms may make treatment more successful. Most people with ankylosing spondylitis can live full, active lives.
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