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Ankylosing spondylitis (say "ang-kill-LOH-sing spawn-duh-LY-tus") is a type of arthritis. It causes pain and stiffness in your neck and back. In some people, it also affects the chest, joints, or eyes.
This problem is different for everyone. You may find that your pain comes and goes. Or maybe you can't move your back or neck very well.
Sometimes the joints in the spine grow together over time. This is called fusion. If this happens, your body may bend forward in a fixed position.
If you do exercises, you will be able to move better and reduce stiffness. Exercises can also help your posture and slow the progress of the disease. You may also want to try physiotherapy.
Medicine can also help with pain and stiffness.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse advice line (811 in most provinces and territories) if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Call your doctor or nurse advice line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse advice line if:
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Current as of: November 9, 2022
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.
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