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    Arthritis Health Center

    Understanding Ankylosing Spondylitis -- Symptoms

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    What Are the Symptoms?

    Not everyone develops all of the following symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis, arthritis of the spine. What you experience depends on the severity of the condition:

    • Stiffness and pain in the lower back, buttocks, and hips upon waking in the morning or after a period of inactivity
    • Back pain relieved by movement and exercise
    • Difficulty bending the spine
    • Pain in the hips and difficulty walking
    • Pain in the heels and soles of the feet
    • Pain in the jaw, the temporomandibular joint (TMJ)
    • Bent-over posture
    • Straightening of the normal curvature of the spine
    • Loss of appetite, weight loss
    • Fatigue, decreased energy
    • Eye swelling, redness, and pain
    • Sensitivity to light
    • Difficulty taking a deep breath (because expanding the chest is difficult and painful)
    • Heart failure
    • Heart block (problems with the flow of the electrical impulses that control your heart muscle)
    • Bowel inflammation like Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis


    Understanding Ankylosing Spondylitis

    Find out more about ankylosing spondylitis:



    Diagnosis and Treatment

    Call Your Doctor About Ankylosing Spondylitis If:

    You develop symptoms such as persistent lower-back pain, especially if it is stiff in the morning but improves with movement and exercise

    You have redness or swelling in the eye, or are abnormally sensitive to light; you could have iritis, a condition commonly associated with ankylosing spondylitis.



    WebMD Medical Reference

    Reviewed by Melinda Ratini, DO, MS on March 04, 2015
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