AS Enthesis and Airport TSA Screening

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I have Enthesis AS, was taking Enbrel but just switched to Humira and Methotrexate. My inflammation is far from under control as of yet.

My question is...

I use air travel often and each time I go through TSA Screening (the one where you step in and put your feet apart on the yellow feet stickers and hands over your head) I have areas of my body that light up with a yellow box. I've had multiple areas but the one that shows up every time is my pelvic region. Each time I have to be patted down and the paper run through the machine. (don't know what that is called)

I've asked my rheumatologist and she said she has never heard of that happening but was going to look into it further. Has anyone ever had this happen or heard of it????

Slowing down the line,


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  • Posted

    Hi Diana...well I don't mean to be flippant about this but just want to give you a giggle...Airports...mmmmm Those of us with A.S. have had a variety of incidents at airports...mine was this. Due to bowel problems I decided to be on the safe side and wear an adult diaper just in case. When I was patted down...the woman doing the patting discovered my "nappy" and said what is this then..? I was almost in tears having to explain the situation....others who heard the discussion were laughing. I was mortified. At 72 years of age I imagined being in a cell for concealing evidence of "drug trafficking"....all was well in the end....but I hate to think what would have happened should I have felt the need to use the nappy while being searched. Laugh if you can my dear..I wish you well....smiles and hugs..G

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    • Posted


      Thanks for sharing. What a wonderful woman you are to take this with strength and a smile. : ) I too have started to expect the "yellow box" and because it's my crotch area my family has had fun with one-liners. My husband wants me to get TSA Approved so that I don't continue to have this problem/delay, which I will end up doing. I'm just curious if other AS people have the same thing happen.

      On one occasion I was having a horrible bout of inflammation in the top of my left hand. (This is an a common problem for me.) When this happens I can't use my hand at all as any movement sends me to the moon. I went through the TSA scanner my pelvis and my hand lit up with a yellow box. This time I was freaking because it meant she would have to feel and run the paper test over my hand. At this age having my crotch patted down is no big deal but the hurting hand was not fun!

      Anyone have TSA Scan Yellow Box Issues??? : )

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    • Posted

      i find this very interesting and ask had thise areas hurt you earlier and you rubbed some type of cream on them like BEN-GAY OR capsacian cream etc.... its possible that those contain some type of metal compound.

      to much iron in your system can cause metal detectors to go off. There are a ton of articles on RA being from heavy metal exposure. Do you live in a farming area or a heavy metal rich soil ir are you exposed somehow to heavy metals at home with out knowing. metals can concentrate in healing bone or bone growth so the first thing i would do is ask for blood work for heavy metals and iron level. it is very possible you could simply have an issue of exposure that fixed could improve your health greatly. Best of luck to you

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    • Posted

      Thanks for the response.

      I didn't have any lotions or creams on my skin. I would estimate that 3/4's of my life I've lived on well water. Roughly 15 years I worked in a dental office and was exposed to a lot of chemicals, specifically...mercury (minimally) and asbestos (not minimally).

      In the next few weeks I'll be replacing my Methotrexate pills with Rasuvo injectable. (Along with Humira) I'm really hoping my stomach can finally settle down a bit.

      I haven't flown in while as this is usually the time of year I take off in search of the sun.

      Thanks for reading and replying. Knowing someone is out there is always a helpful feeling.

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