Managing Ankylosing Spondylitis: Early Detection and Progression Control

Managing Ankylosing Spondylitis: Early Detection and Progression Control

Subtle Onset of Symptoms

Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS), a chronic inflammatory ailment primarily affecting the spine, often unveils itself through mild beginnings. The most prevalent sign is the gradual onset of low back pain, which may initially go unnoticed. Yet, persistent back pain should not be taken lightly, especially when it persists for over three months.

Crucial Role of Early Diagnosis

Early intervention is pivotal in managing AS. If back pain persists for an extended period, seeking consultation from a specialist, particularly a Rheumatologist, is essential. Many individuals lack awareness about differentiating between mechanical and inflammatory back pain, making expert evaluation vital.

Inflammatory Back Pain Explained

The distinctive back pain associated with AS is inflammatory in nature. It occurs due to the immune system erroneously attacking the spine’s joints. This condition often leads to misdiagnosis, incorrect treatments, and unnecessary suffering. It’s alarming that nearly 69% of patients in India receive inaccurate treatment before consulting a Rheumatologist.

Expert Insights on Management

Dr. Ved Chaturvedi from Sir Ganga Ram Hospital emphasizes the role of the HLA B 27 gene and intestinal bacteria in AS development. Patients are urged to adopt a positive and active lifestyle. Early detection is key to minimizing chronic pain and controlling the ailment’s progression.

Strategies for Progression Control

To combat AS, patients should prioritize several strategies. Consulting a Rheumatologist is paramount for proper diagnosis and management. Adhering to prescribed treatments significantly prevents symptom deterioration. Lifestyle changes, including regular exercise and consuming nutrient-rich foods, contribute to slowing down the disease’s advancement.

Role of Treatment Adherence

While AS lacks a cure, adherence to the treatment plan is crucial. Collaborating closely with medical professionals aids in customizing the most effective treatment regimen. Biologic drugs might be recommended depending on the diagnosis, aimed at curbing inflammation’s progression.

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