This AS Life: AS and This AS Life.

This AS Life offers expert advice for those affected by ankylosing spondylitis. Here’s a little more about what AS is and how This AS Life helps.

(For more information about AS, read our common FAQs)

What is This AS Life?

This AS Life is a website dedicated to ankylosing spondylitis patients. Set up to help those living with this chronic illness, we facilitate the sharing of personal stories, tips and articles – so you can discover new ways to live boldly.

The loop

What first? We listen to what AS patients all over the world are talking about. It could be anything from inspirational stories, pain relieving tips, nutritional advice or questions that need addressing. Everything we hear is fuel for new articles.

Who writes the articles? Our selected experts. Our team is made up of anyone in the know. Doctors, rheumatologists, fitness experts, nutritionists and of course the most valuable experts of all – AS patients themselves.

What next? We post our findings on This AS Life, then encourage you to share and discuss your thoughts across social media.

Then after that? We start the process all over again.

What's the purpose?

Everything you see on This AS Life starts and ends with AS patients, so we hope this will be a valuable tool for years to come in our mission to learn more and tackle AS head on, together.

Novartis is committed to rheumatology with a focus on increasing awareness and investing in vital research.
Novartis is dedicated to improving the lives of patients with ankylosing spondylitis all over the world, by facilitating the sharing of information between them.

Ankylosing spondylitis: Common FAQs

What is ankylosing spondylitis?

Ankylosing spondylitis (often shortened to AS) is a long-term condition that affects the axial skeleton (the bones of the spine, lower back and rib cage).1

The condition typically causes inflammation in the lower spine and the sacroiliac joints (where the base of the spine meets the pelvis) known as ‘spondylitis’.1

‘Ankylosis’ is a medical term to define the formation of new bone.5 In untreated AS, ankylosis takes place in the spine and sacroiliatic joints, making the joints in that area stiffer and less flexible.1

Who does it affect?

AS is more common in men than women, with up to a 3:1 ratio.6 It tends to develop when people are in their 20s.7

Is it inherited?

No-one is yet 100% sure how AS develops, but genes are definitely thought to play a part. AS is associated with several genes (most prominently HLA-B27) that are passed down through families.8 In one study, these genes are thought to contribute between 20–50% of the genetic risk of developing AS.9

References: 1. Lories RJ, Baeten DL. Clin Exp Rheumatol 2009; 27:S10–4. 2. Schneeberger EE et al. Clin Rheumatol 2015; 34:497–501. 3. Li et al. Arhtritis Res Ther 2012; 15:R215. 4. Bandwatch social listening report 28.10.15 – data on file. 5. Haroon N. Clin Rheumatol 2015; 34:1003–1007. 6. Chen H-H et al. Clinics (Sao Paulo) 2011; 66:251–254. 7. Feldtkeller E et al. Rheumatol Int 2003; 23:61–66. 8. Sheehan NJ. Rheumatology (Oxford) 2010; 49:621–631. 9. Brown MA et al. Hum Mol Genet 2000; 9:1563–1566.

Find Support

Take on AS with an army behind you. Patient support groups can be there to celebrate with you in the ups and pick you up in the downs. They’re also great places to get practical advice about living with AS.

Learn More