Can older female have AS?

Posted , 6 users are following.

Hi,

I have for many years had sacroilliac joint pain, which flares regularly. I also have fibromyalgia .

Whilst looking online for SI joint pain help, a link to AS came up. I have all the symptoms listed, however my doctor has told me its not likely as I am a female in my early 50's, and AS is really a condition that affects younger males.

Please can anyone tell me if this is correct ? I am at my wits end with the pain. I have tramadol but it makes me groggy. I really would like to know.what causes my SI pain, not just treat the pain ...

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6 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Deborah,

    Sorry to hear about all of the pain you have been enduring! I think you should get a second opinion from a rheumatologist. I am a female in my early 20s and have been living with AS for years (diagnosed based on SI joint pain among other symptoms connected to AS). AS is not specific to males or even people under 50 so it could unfortunately be possible for you to have it too.

    Best to check with another medical professional, your doctor shouldn't dismiss the possibility of it.

    Good luck!

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    • Posted

      Hi Deborah,

      Sorry to hear you're suffering. I too have AS and have only been diagnosed a couple of years now. I'm 48. I've had SI joint pain for years too but had never even heard of AS. I was only diagnosed because I have had recurring uveitis in my eyes! I now take a biologic injection which has helped me immensely. Hope you get some answers from your doc about this.

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  • Posted

    I was diagnosed with AS at age 54. In hind site I'd had it for years. I've been on meds for the past year and am currently on Enbrel and Methotrexate . I'm still getting situated on dosing.

    Even "older" women can be diagnosed with AS. : ) Best of luck on getting your answers!

    Diana

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  • Posted

    HI Deborah,

    Unfortunately your Dr is working from outdated studies of AS. I was diagnosed at 50- 51. (A female friend of mine, similar age has also recently been diagnosed accurately, when by chance we ended up talking about the symptoms, so I told her to go and ask the Dr about it and they referred her. It then turned out she had it too, from further investigations!!)

    My diagnosis made sense of a lot of things in my life health wise! it seems due to initial studies and the lack of understanding of the disease in the medical profession the lead time to get go an accurate diagnosis in women is approx 7-8 years!! (My Physiotherapist did some research and confirmed this too!! )

    Finally after MRI confirmation, blood tests confirming inflammation and a positive HLA B27 positive genetic test I finally got a diagnosis.

    I've suffered from a number of conditions including Plantar Fascitis, Calciferous Tendonitis, elbow joint issues and have burn spurs growing on my feet and ankles and SI fusion.

    All apparently consistent with AS. I have joint flares and fatigue because of it. Things are worst first thing when i get up especially around my lower spine and SI regions!!

    I don't have Fibromyalgia and wonder if sometimes due to lack of up to date information whether the medical profession defers to that as a default diagnosis for conditions like this?!?

    I would fight for further investigation because you need accurate diagnosis, and investigation is needed to achieve that. Correct diagnosis should lead to correct treatment and management!

    Hope that helps a little bit but you sound like you need further investigations as fitting you solely under the Fibromyalgia banner may be a false positive diagnosis without accurate evidence from investigating your symptoms properly.

    Wishing you all the best in getting some better answers. It may be worth contacting NASS for some further advice? They're a charity specific to this condition. Exercises to maintain flexibility are a key management of this disease. There is a lot of rubbish about it on the Internet so try and keep to good sources for info!

    Under the NICE guidelines apparently AS has been rebranded as Axial Spondyloarthritis too so be aware of both terms!

    Also another issue many people with AS have is an eye condition called Uveitis! If it tends to reoccur, then eye departments in hospitals should suggest further investigations and referral into Rheumatology !

    Best Wishes

    Michelle

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  • Posted

    Hi. Rheumatology has come a long way since your doctor was trained. The newest clssisfication is much broader and includes your symptoms. i also suggest you see a trained rheumatologist.

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  • Posted

    Wow, tank you for these responses. Really helpful to have confirmation from you, and whilst i hate that you all experience this too its quite overwhelming to.hear about your experiences - I feel quite tearful as its validating my own experience.

    I have managed to get a referral to.a rheumatologist for fibro, but will certainly be mentioning this too. Im in agony at present and its really getting me down, but your help has been wonderful.

    Thank you for taking tne time to respond, I really appreciate it 😘

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