What are the main symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis?
The symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis are different for every person, but typically begin as frequent pain in the lower back and/or neck, morning stiffness and limited range of motion. The most common symptom of AS is pain in the lower back. The pain can come and go, or remain constant. The pain and stiffness is usually worse in the morning than at night, and is usually dull and spread out as opposed to concentrated in a particular area. The pain becomes "chronic" when it affects both sides of your back and hips for at least three months. Over time, the joints between your rib cage and breastbone may become stiff and painful, making it difficult to take a deep breath. Other areas of your body may become stiff and painful including your shoulder blades, knees, ankles, and heels and small bones of your feet and hands. In severe cases, the spaces between the joints in your spine may become fused together. This may make it difficult to move or flex your spine.
SOURCE: Emory University - Department of Human Genetics in collaboration with ThinkGenetic • https://www.thinkgenetic.com/diseases/ankylosing-spondylitis/symptoms/7003 • DATE UPDATED: 2016-06-07