Ankylosing spondylitis is a rare form of arthritis that mainly affects your spine. As an inflammatory disease, ankylosing spondylitis causes stiffness and inflammation and can lead to ankylosis (a new bone formation in the spine). While there is currently no cure for AS, researchers are using clinical studies to develop new, more effective ankylosing spondylitis treatment options.
Ankylosing Spondylitis Treatment
There is no cure for AS, but there are multiple ankylosing spondylitis treatment methods aimed at relieving the symptoms of the disease. However, it is important to note that not everyone responds to each treatment, and it may take some time to find one that works for you.
If you have tried all the available treatment options without seeing results, you may be a good candidate for ankylosing spondylitis research studies.
Most medications for ankylosing spondylitis are aimed at treating pain, though not everyone needs them constantly.
Types of painkillers prescribed include:
Non-steroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)
In addition to helping relieve pain, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs reduce the inflammation in your joints. NSAIDs are typically the first type of painkiller recommended or prescribed. Some NSAIDs include ibuprofen, naproxen, and indomethacin.
An alternative painkiller to NSAIDs, Paracetamol rarely causes side effects and is safe for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. It is not recommended for those with liver problems or individuals dependent on alcohol.
Codeine is a more potent painkiller that is many times prescribed in addition to Paracetamol. It can cause side effects, such as feeling or being sick, drowsiness, and constipation.
Physiotherapy and Exercise
Physiotherapy and exercise are critical parts of ankylosing spondylitis treatment. An effective exercise program can improve your posture and range of spinal movement and prevent pain and stiffening in your spine. At the same time, physiotherapy will help relieve pain and make movement easier.
Types of physiotherapy and exercises include:
- Massage therapy
- Group exercise
- Individual exercise
Ankylosing Spondylitis Treatment Surgery
In cases where the joints are severely damaged, surgery may be recommended, though most patients with ankylosing spondylitis will not need surgery.
Types of surgeries involved include:
- Joint replacement surgery (hip replacement)
- Corrective surgery
How a Clinical Trial May Help You with Your Illness
Researchers are making huge strides in medical advancements and developing new treatments for ankylosing spondylitis.
A new, advanced drug that can slow the development of ankylosing spondylitis and improve related symptoms is undergoing clinical trials. Researchers believe this new drug will produce better results for patients with AS than today’s treatments.
Clinical studies need diverse groups of patients to gather the data they need to develop new, safe, effective treatments for you and thousands of others. If you have run out of treatment options or you’re interested in trying new treatments, consider joining a research study today.
By participating in a clinical research trial, you can improve your life, the lives of others and help researchers gather the precious data required to develop new and better treatments.