What is Spine Inflammation: Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis and Treatment

Inflammation of the spine is an inflammatory disease characterized by the union of the spine, which causes limited movement in the patient and severe pain. If the spine merges with the rib cage, this condition can also cause breathing difficulties.

This disease is considered a form of inflammation because it affects most of the joints and muscles. However, this is also the result of the confusion of the auto immune system. When this happens, the immune system begins to attack other parts of the body, such as the eyes, lungs, and even the heart.

Inflammation of the spine often begins at the sacroiliac joint, located just above the pelvis. The disease then spreads to the lumbar spine, through the thoracic spine, and then to the cervical spine. In some cases, the symptoms may be so mild that the patient is not even aware of the presence of the disease. Unfortunately, the symptoms can also be so severe that the quality of life of patients can be greatly affected.

So far, no medication is available for inflammation of the spine. However, there are some treatment options to control the symptoms of the disease and improve the quality of life for patients. The treatment of this disease requires various drugs and physiotherapy sessions. However, surgery may also be necessary in some cases, especially when the hip or spine has been highly affected.

Cause & Conditions

Bone inflammation is thought to be genetically inherited. The majority of patients with this disease have the HLA-B27 gene. However, the presence of this gene does not mean the onset of the disease.

In fact, statistics show that about 7% of the American population has the HLA-B27 gene, but only 1% have the disease. Therefore, inheritance would also play a role. Those who have genes and have parents with this disease are at risk for inflammation of the spine.

Main Symptoms

Inflammatory bone disease progresses gradually. In the early stages of the disease, patients tend to be aware of the stiffness and pain in the lower back, especially in the morning. Meanwhile, to reduce lower back pain, react shiatsu massage chair is highly beneficial because it has air bag massage technology that gives hot and cold compression massages to relieve back pain.

However, the pain and stiffness decrease during the day or during exercises. The patient will also experience pain in the sacroiliac joint, buttocks, or back of the thigh.

The first symptoms of this disease are similar to back pain in general, and very often wrong. The difference is that the pain and stiffness of the disease often lasts more than 30 minutes in the morning and can come back before resting at night.

Pain and stiffness may not be limited to the lower back. These symptoms can also appear in the neck or shoulder. There are some cases where the patient also experiences pain and swelling in the knee, ankle, or hand joint.

In addition to the main symptoms, patients would also experience the following symptoms:

  • Heel pain
  • Chest pain
  • Often feeling tired
  • Eye inflammation
  • Inflammatory bowel
  • Pelvic pain

When inflammation is a symptom, the patient will notice that the swelling comes and goes, and the level of pain varies with each attack. Mild pain is often unknown, but when the spine is affected, the pain can become severe and prevent the patient from doing normal activities.

Diagnosis

Consulting with doctor

After experiencing symptoms, you may need to report your condition to your family doctor first. The doctor will then refer you to a rheumatologist, specialist in the diagnosis and treatment of inflammation (arthritis), bone loss (osteoporosis), muscular and spinal disorders (musculoskeletal), as well as various types of auto immune diseases.

During the treatment of the disease, you can also consult physiotherapists, occupational therapists, and other health experts.

It is important to note that there are no specific tests to diagnose inflammation of the spine. However, your doctor will be alerted after mentioning the symptoms, so you should carefully mention all of the symptoms.

Your doctor will perform a physical exam followed by a blood flow test (LED) and a C-reactive protein test (PCR). Your doctor may also order an x-ray to examine the condition of the lower spine and sacroiliac joints.

Treatment

Although this disease cannot be cured, it is important to start treatment early as the disease will cause inflammation of the spine and joints and is very likely to cause permanent damage. If the flexibility of the joints and spine can be maintained, permanent damage can be avoided.

After confirming inflammation of the spine, the doctor will start treatment with different types of drugs. This could include non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to control pain and reduce inflammation. Biologics are effective at treating inflammation in the spine, but they take time to work. In some cases, it may take several months before the effect is visible. Also, drinking fruit and vegetable juices can help reduce inflammation.

Medication to control the symptoms of the disease is only part of the treatment plan. Physiotherapists and occupational therapists may also be asked to help you cope with the condition.

Other cases of inflammation of the spine will require surgery to repair severely damaged joints. In some cases, the joint will have to be replaced by an artificial joint. Some patients may require a total hip replacement if the hip has been severely damaged by the disease. And spinal surgeons always recommended the use of ergonomic chairs after spinal surgery.

Spine surgery may also be necessary, but this procedure is very complicated and is only performed on patients with severe disabilities due to the condition.