Inflammatory diseases of the spine

This condition is caused by the inflammation of the spinal joints (facet joints and intervertebral disc), which often occurs in conjunction with inflammation in other joints of the body, especially the pelvic joints (sacroiliac joint). Genetic factors or autoimmune diseases may be responsible, and the condition is usually found in individuals between the ages of 20 and 40 (young adults). Common diseases include ankylosing spondylitis and psoriatic arthritis.
  • Back pain
  • Stiffness in the back
  • Pain in the pelvic area or other joints
  • Spinal deformity (Kyphotic spine)
  • Difficulty maintaining a horizontal gaze 
  • Inability to lie flat on your back without the need for a pillow to support your head
  • In stages where inflammation is still active, a consultation with a rheumatologist is necessary to conduct a blood test and provide a diagnosis.
  • A plain X-ray of the painful area can be used to examine the vertebrae or intervertebral disc, detect fused spine, and determine if there is a spinal deformity.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with contrast may be used in certain patients to confirm inflammation or in cases where there are symptoms of compression on the nerves or spinal cord.
The treatment depends on the stage of the disease. 
  • Medication: During the early stages of inflammation, a rheumatologist is often consulted to prescribe medication to control the disease. 
  • Surgical treatment: This is used in cases where the spine is deformed, especially with kyphotic deformity. Surgery may be considered for patients who are unable to carry out normal daily activities, such as maintaining a straight gaze, lying flat on their back, or in some cases, when inflammation of the spinal joint causes joint instability.

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