n. inflammation of the synovial joints of the backbone. Ankylosing spondylitis is a sero-negative arthritis; 90% of cases carry the tissue-type antigen HLA-B27 (see HLA system). Ankylosing spondylitis predominantly affects young adult Caucasian males and the inflammation affects the joint capsules and their attached ligaments and tendons, principally the intervertebral joints and sacroiliac joints (see sacroiliitis). The resultant pain and stiffness are treated by analgesics (including NSAIDs) and physiotherapy. The disorder can lead to severe deformities of the spine (see kyphosis, ankylosis) and the hip joint, in which case surgical correction or arthroplasty may be required.
Subjects: Medicine and Health.