Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS)
Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is a condition which can lead to pain and stiffening in the spine and also to inflammation in joints in the arms and legs. Recognising AS often takes time because it may be disregarded either by the person affected or their doctor as simple backache.
AS is a form of spondyloarthritis, a chronic inflammatory arthritis where immune mechanisms are thought to have a key role. It mainly affects joints in the spine and the sacroiliac joint in the pelvis and can cause eventual fusion of the spine.
AS is a member of the group of the spondyloarthropathies with a strong genetic predisposition. Complete fusion results in a complete rigidity of the spine, a condition known as “bamboo spine”.
Pathological investigations like HLA B 27, ESR and CRP helps in identifying disease.
Men develop AS about three times more often than women do. The disorder affects men and women differently.
Signs and symptoms commonly found with AS are:
- Back pain, back stiffness
- Pain in the buttocks
- Arthritis – inflammation of the joints. When the joint is moved it hurts, when the doctor or anybody examines the joint there is pain, the joint is swollen, and the affected area is warm.
Early detection is the best way to avoid damage occurring to the spine so ongoing back pain needs to be investigated. Treatment with medications can help to control symptoms
Following the given measures may help to prevent complications, progression of the disease and make living with the disease easier.
- Regular exercises: Experts say that exercise should be an integral part of any spondylitis management program. Doing exercises daily can improve your muscle strength, create better posture and improve joint flexibility and overall fitness. Apart from this, it can help to lessen pain.
- Eat healthy: Healthy diet can help you to maintain your optimal body weight.
- Take your medication
- Regular reviews: AS is a chronic condition and therefore, a regular follow up as advised by your healthcare professional is important.
- Posture: Adopting good posture techniques may delay or prevent some of the complications of spondylitis including stiffness and flexion deformities / kyphosis (downward curvature) of the spine.
Only constitutional treatment will help to cure and control AS. After complete understanding of case and triggering factors noted, homeopathic medicines can be prescribed. With homeopathy the deranged immunity can be rectified leading to cure.
Some medicines which can help to alleviate pain and get relief are:
Rhustox :-pain which is aggravated at rest and better when patient starts to move .
Bryonia :- pain aggravated by least motion even turning in bed.
Calc fluor :- Severe stiffness and anxiety especially related to money matters.