Don't Let Ankylosing Spondylitis Keep You from Living Your Life

Posted on: 18 July 2018

The teenage years and 20s are when people make career choices based on their interests and availability to continuing education. Sometimes, however, medical conditions can limit the possibilities of one's career choices, such as back pain and stiffness. If you are a young man in your teens or 20s and experiencing pain and stiffness in your back, you may have a condition called ankylosing spondylitis, which is a type of arthritis. 

Ankylosing spondylitis causes the vertebrae in the spine to fuse together, which can lead to poor posture. Fortunately, early diagnosis and treatment can help reduce the risks of deformity and help to control stiffness and pain. Here's what you need to know about getting a diagnosis, types of treatments available, and what types of career choices may be affected. 


Go to your primary care physician with your concerns regarding your back pain and stiffness. He or she will ask for your family's medical history because this condition can be hereditary, so be sure to ask your parents and other family members if anyone in your family has been diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis. Your physician will do a physical exam and order various tests, such as X-rays and laboratory tests. Your physician may also take measurements of your chest and ask you to breathe deeply, because this condition affects the mobility of chest expansion


There are various treatment options for ankylosing spondylitis, including the use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, exercise, occupational therapy and physical therapy. Chiropractic care is also a treatment option, but the chiropractor will need to be fully aware of your condition so they can be more cautious and use non-forceful approaches in your treatment. If you do choose a chiropractor, be sure to choose one that is experienced in dealing with people with ankylosing spondylitis. 


The only careers that would be difficult for you to do are ones that require hard manual labor and ones that require a lot of heavy lifting and bending. However, as long as you start treatment promptly and continue with your treatment choices, your condition may not become severe enough to hinder any career choices. Regardless of which direction you decide to go in with your career choice, be sure to inform your chiropractor and occupational therapist so they can develop treatment plans that will assist you in being able to be gainfully employable in your chosen career field.