Imagine having a painful disease that no one has ever heard of. Most people have never heard of spondylitis, even though it’s anything but rare. For every hundred people you meet, chances are at least one of them has spondylitis. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 2.7 million people… In the U.S. live with spondylitis… Making it more common than multiple sclerosis, cystic fibrosis, and Lou Gehrig’s disease–combined. Spondylitis is a form of spinal arthritis that generally strikes people between the
ages of 17 and 45. Typically, spondylitis causes pain and stiffness… And, in severe cases, can result in fusion of the spine and/or neck… Sometimes leading to disability. Hips, shoulders, and other joints… As well as the eyes, skin, and bowels… Can also be affected. More rarely, because it’s a systemic condition… Other organs–such as the heart
and lungs–can become involved. Spondylitis has a strong genetic component, meaning that it can run in families. Although spondylitis isn’t rare, it remains relatively unknown… And often goes undiagnosed, or worse misdiagnosed, in its early stages. The average time from the onset of symptoms to diagnosis is between seven and 10 years. These critical years are often when the majority of damage takes place. Since spondylitis is a form of inflammatory arthritis and not a mechanical issue… It will not go away on its own. While there is no cure yet for spondylitis, effective treatments are available… And include medications, regular exercise, and good posture practices. Some individuals report that modifying their diet has a positive effect on symptoms. Starting treatment early is essential to ensure the best possible outcome and the highest quality of life. No two cases of spondylitis are alike, and
effective disease management requires working closely… With your doctor to craft an effective overall treatment plan. If you suspect that you or someone you know may have spondylitis… And want to learn more about the signs and symptoms of the disease… How it’s treated, find a recommended rheumatologist, or connect with people who have spondylitis… Then visit and support the leading U.S. nonprofit organization 100% dedicated to improving the lives of people living with spondylitis… Spondylitis Association of America at spondylitis.org You’re not alone. We’re here to help. Help us shorten the long road to diagnosis. Help raise awareness. Share this video now.