the diagnosis of Ankylosing Spondylitis is based on analysing the combination of your symptoms, the limitations of movement we find on testing and a blood test for the HLAB27 factor.
Prolonged (hours) of morning stiffness, loss of back movement in all directions, reduction of chest expansion leading to breathing restriction and some pain relief with being active are possible symptoms of AS.
Xrays may show some bony fusion of the pelvis of spinal joints later in the process. A family history of AS increases the likely hood you have AS but there are many other diagnoses that need to be excluded.
Because there is now a range of effective medications seeing a rheumatologist to look at your options is vital. If you have AS then there is a support group in most states, access to intensive rehab programs and the option of individual physiotherapy with someone with experience in this problem.
I have been involved in research for AS, hydrotherapy sessions for those with AS and I also treat some AS clients once a month to assist them with specific pain or limitations and progress their exercise programs.
Helen Potter FACP
In Touch Physiotherapy Subiaco
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