Ankylosing spondylitis is a type of inflammatory arthritis that primarily affects the spine, causing inflammation of the joints between the vertebrae. Over time, this inflammation can lead to the fusion of the vertebrae, resulting in a rigid spine. Ankylosing spondylitis can also affect other joints, such as the hips, shoulders, and knees, and can cause inflammation in the eyes, lungs, and heart. The exact cause of ankylosing spondylitis is unknown, but it is thought to be related to genetic factors.
Bursitis, on the other hand, is a condition that affects the small, fluid-filled sacs called bursae that cushion the bones, tendons, and muscles around the joints. Bursitis occurs when a bursa becomes inflamed, usually as a result of repetitive motions, injury, or infection. Bursitis can occur in any joint but is most common in the shoulder, hip, elbow, and knee. Symptoms of bursitis include pain, stiffness, and swelling in the affected joint.
The causes of ankylosing spondylitis and bursitis are different:
Ankylosing spondylitis is an autoimmune disease, which means that the body's immune system mistakenly attacks its own tissues. The exact cause of ankylosing spondylitis is not known, but it is thought to be related to genetic factors. A specific genetic marker called HLA-B27 is found in most people with ankylosing spondylitis, although not all people with the marker develop the disease.
Bursitis, on the other hand, can have a variety of causes, including:
Repetitive motion or overuse: Repeated movements or activities that put stress on the joints can cause bursitis.
Injury: Trauma to the joint can cause bursitis.
Infection: Bursitis can also occur as a result of a bacterial infection.
Arthritis: Some types of arthritis, such as gout or rheumatoid arthritis, can cause bursitis.
Aging: As we age, the bursae can become less elastic and more susceptible to inflammation.
Other medical conditions: Certain medical conditions, such as diabetes or thyroid disease, can increase the risk of developing bursitis.
The symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis and bursitis are different:
Ankylosing spondylitis primarily affects the spine and can cause the following symptoms:
Pain and stiffness in the lower back, hips, and buttocks, which may be worse in the morning or after periods of inactivity.
Reduced flexibility in the spine, making it difficult to bend or twist.
Fatigue and malaise.
Inflammation in other joints, such as the shoulders, knees, and ankles.
Inflammation in the eyes, causing redness, pain, and sensitivity to light.
Chest pain, shortness of breath, or other symptoms of inflammation in the lungs or heart.
Bursitis, on the other hand, primarily affects the joints and can cause the following symptoms:
Pain and tenderness in the affected joint.
Stiffness and reduced range of motion in the joint.
Swelling and redness around the joint.
Warmth or a fever, which may indicate an infection.
A crunching or popping sound when moving the joint, which may be a sign of calcific bursitis.
Ankylosing spondylitis treatment may include:
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to reduce inflammation and pain.
Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) to slow the progression of the disease.
Biologic agents that block specific proteins involved in the inflammatory process.
Physical therapy to improve mobility and flexibility.
Exercise to improve posture and strengthen muscles.