Ankylosing Spondylitis Specialist

Vijay R. Karia, MD -  - Rheumatologist

Integrative Rheumatology of Texas

Vijay R. Karia, MD

Rheumatologist located in Houston, TX

Dr.Vijay Karia and his staff offer reliable treatment options for serious health conditions that fall under the specialties of rheumatology and internal medicine. At Integrative Rheumatology of Texas, patients who have been diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis can receive the highest quality of healthcare possible. The doctor and staff treat patients who live in the greater Houston, Texas area as well as many nearby communities, including Pearland, Spring, Conroe, and Beaumont.

Ankylosing Spondylitis

What is ankylosing spondylitis?

Ankylosing spondylitis is a form of arthritis that only affects the spine. Unlike other forms of arthritis that cause fluid build up and creates scar tissue, ankylosing spondylitis gradually causes the bones of the spine to begin to fuse together. As the bones begin to fuse, this can begin to draw the ends of the spine together, causing a person to stoop or bend over. Over time, the bones and connective tissue continue to solidify, deforming both the bones and joints of the spinal column. If caught in its earliest stages, the progression of the condition can be dramatically slowed through the use of oral medications and other types of therapy.

What are the signs of ankylosing spondylitis?

Symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis include:

  • Chronic pain and back stiffness
  • Pain in the sacroiliac joint
  • Pain that gradually moves upward throughout the joints of the spine
  • Inflammation limiting movement
  • Stiffness and immobility causing a stooped appearance

The sacroiliac joint is where the sacrum and the pelvic bone meet on each side of the body.This leads to stiffness and immobility that further exaggerates a person's stooped appearance.

Can it be treated effectively?

Ankylosing spondylitis can be treated effectively if caught in the earliest stages. NSAIDs and anti-rheumatic medications can help control how the condition affects the joints. Physical therapy and regular exercise are beneficial in keeping the blood flow through the area strong and constant. Occupational therapy that is directed at maintaining certain types of movement is also recommended. If the condition continues to advance, surgery may be needed to replace a joint or section of bone that is causing extreme pain. Infusion therapy is one of the most effective forms of treatment for ankylosing spondylitis. It has proven to give fast and effective relief for patients who have been severely affected by the condition.

Insurance Information

Please call the office for questions regarding insurance.

Aetna
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas
Cigna
Humana
Medicare
MultiPlan / PHCS
Tricare
United Healthcare