Arthritis: Ankylosing Spondylitis

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Ankylosing Spondylitis is a type of inflammatory spinal arthritis that effects mostly young men. Over time the vertebral and sacro-iliac joints can become ankylosed or fused together causing the spine to become rigid and less flexible.

Ankylosing spondylitis is an inflammatory disease that, over time, can cause some of the small bones in your spine (vertebrae) 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.

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