Pain, morning stiffness, tiredness … the hell of ankylosing spondylitis

Backache, ankylosis, fatigue ... Ankylosing spondylitis affects young people. Detected late, this disease exposes to complications in the spine. Because treatments avoid them and offer patients a normal life, a campaign raises awareness among the general public and professionals of an early diagnosis.

Identify spondylarthritis earlier for better treatment

At 20, we all want to practice sports, to go out, to lead a life full of events. But for a long time, this normal life has been forbidden to many people suffering from ankylosing spondylitis. Striking between 15 and 40 years, it affects a little more men than women. It is mainly manifested by damage to the rachis and the pelvis, but sometimes also to the peripheral joints, especially the feet, knees or hips.

"Back to the wall", first campaign on ankylosing spondylitis

This chronic inflammatory rheumatism, the most common after rheumatoid arthritis (0.2 to 0.3% of the population) affects young people. It is characterized by inflammation of the "entheses", which are the insertion areas of the tendons and ligaments in the bone. In some cases, it is accompanied by other symptoms: uveitis, skin manifestations, inflammations of the digestive tract, or even the uro-genital sphere ...

For patients, the disease is mainly painful, often lively, readily nocturnal (able to wake the patient by stitches) of the spine and / or buttocks not calmed by rest and decreasing with exercise, and A morning ankylosis (stiffness, difficulty getting up ...). In the course of the thrusts, the vertebrae end up welding in an inopportune position resulting in more or less large cuts and thus a definite ankylosis of the spine. The challenge today is to diagnose early and take care of patients before such tremors occur.

These daily symptoms and complications affect quality of life, work, family and family life at an age when projects are overflowing. But in recent years, the arrival of biotherapies has upset the treatment of spondylarthritis for patients in treatment failure with NSAIDs. Combined with multidisciplinary care where information, education and rehabilitation play a key role, biotherapies can restore, in some cases spectacular, the quality of life of our patients. However, these treatments relieve, but do not heal.

Currently, patients with spondylitis suffer from a severe delay in diagnosis. One of the hopes of the researchers is to be able to identify this disease early. It is likely that earlier the patients will be taken care of, the stronger the chances of putting them in remission ... even to defeat the disease.

Established in 2007 under the aegis of the French Society of Rheumatology with the institutional support of Pfizer and coordinated by Maxime Dougados (Hôpital Cochin), the DESIR (Becoming Recent Indifferentiated Spondyloarthropathy) cohort brings together 700 people aged between 18 and 50 , Victims of chronic inflammatory lower back pain that are no doubt early spondylitis. This cohort will be monitored for 5 to 10 years to better understand the disease, to better diagnose and manage it.

In partnership with Pfizer, the French rheumatology company is launching an awareness and information campaign on this chronic inflammatory rheumatism. Baptized "Back to the Wall", this initiative is supported by Frank Leboeuf. "I am very active, I imagine the difficulty of living with persistent back pain." Men do not complain, so the idea of ​​putting images and words on these pains challenged me. Convey the message that solutions exist and that we must above all talk about it "says the former footballer.

A backache like no other

Disseminated from May 23, this campaign features a young man whose back is inhabited by a dragon, which comes alive as an allegory of inflammation. It will be available on TV, radio and on the web with Conceived as an interview between Franck Leboeuf and a journalist, the spots will be broadcast until June 13th, then during a second wave in late September / early October. For Professor René-Marc Flipo, General Secretary of the French Society of Rheumatology (SFR): "This is the first time that an awareness campaign has been conducted on this pathology. Public health in the United States Today, the management and treatment of ankylosing spondylitis have evolved, information remains essential because this disease requires an early management. "

Today, treatments and comprehensive management help relieve patients, some of whom succeed in overcoming the disease on a daily basis. Discover on we the testimony of Alain Grassi, athlete of high level in sporting walk. Today, he is preparing to travel 637 km to walk during the "6 days of Antibes" from 6 to 12 June, the distance walked by the best walker in 2009. He is delighted with this new initiative: "Each I am really happy that a sportsman like Franck Leboeuf, is committed to our side to make known spondylarthritis, his reputation will help us a lot " . To find out more about this unsung rheumatism, (re) discover our file on spondyloarthropathies.

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