The variety of spinal conditions abounds! Your Easley chiropractor is in the know. Young Chiropractic welcomes them all! For best relief of pain and limited function, the initial step is to recognize the condition then set up its proper treatment. Young Chiropractic is experienced in both! This week’s highlighted condition is inflammatory back pain, axial spondyloarthritis, and the spine-specific kind, ankylosing spondylitis.
Axial spondyloarthritis is an inflammatory back pain condition. It’s commonly missed as a cause of chronic low back pain although approximately 1% of the US population experiences it. Characteristics of axial spondyloarthritis consist of onset before 45 years old, morning stiffness, improvement with exercise not rest, alternating gluteal pain, and positive response to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug treatment. Other features of axial spondyloarthritis include enthesitis (inflammation of tendons and ligaments as they insert into bone), dactylitis (inflammation of a finger or toe), peripheral arthritis, extra-articular appearances (like psoriasis, inflammatory bowel disease, or uveitis), positive for the human leukocyte antigen B27, and a family history of the disease. Prompt diagnosis is key as is referral to a rheumatologist for evaluation and cooperative care. (1) Not only is axial spondyloarthritis overlooked in medical practices, but it is sometimes overlooked in chiropractic practices, too. (2) It’s just not identified as what it is: an immune-mediated inflammatory disease. Your Easley chiropractor is aware and looks for it so that typical lapses of time - sometimes years - will not go by between symptom onset and diagnosis. Since it’s a back pain condition, axial spondyloarthritis can be diagnosed and co-managed with chiropractic care for positive outcomes.
ANKYLOSING SPONDYLITIS: A SUBSET OF AXIAL SPONDYLOARTHRITIS SPECIFIC TO THE SPINE
One variety of axial spondyloarthritis is ankylosing spondylitis. Spondylitis means inflammation of the vertebrae. Interdisciplinary management with medical, chiropractic and rehab often works well for these patients in decreasing their symptoms and increasing musculoskeletal function. (3) Treating this condition requires gentle care that certified Cox® Technic chiropractic physicians are experienced in performing. A case of a 30-year-old male first diagnosed at age 12 whose condition, despite medical care, led to fusion of his sacroiliac joints and his facet joints in the lumbar and cervical spine. The patient was treated with chiropractic spinal manipulation of his thoracic, lumbar, and cervical spine areas and physical therapy stretches for 12 weeks. His advanced condition responded favorably with some improvement in pain and flexibility. (4) Another male patient who was 34 years old with a 10-year history of AS underwent 18 weeks of chiropractic spinal manipulation and mobilization. This led to a 90% improvement in a disease activity index and an 85% improvement in a functional index from beginning to end. (5) Young Chiropractic delivers very gentle spinal manipulation and mobilization in the form of Cox® Technic distraction decompression. An advanced state of the condition does not rule out chiropractic care or its resulting good outcomes.
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Listen to this PODCAST with Dr. Gabriel Monterrubio on The Back Doctors Podcast with Dr. Michael Johnson. He discusses his use of the Cox® Technic System of Spinal Pain Management for treating ankylosing spondylitis.