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Ankylosing spondylitis [AS] is an inflammatory disorder. You’d also think of it as a form of arthritis. It presents with pain and stiffness — in certain cases, it can lead to loss of mobility. This may, likewise, cause erosion of bone and increased bone formation in the spine. This can get fused; in severe cases, it can lead to spinal deformity. The disorder often affects males in their teens and twenties; however, it can affect anyone, whatever one’s age. AS tends to be milder when it affects in women — this could make it sometimes difficult to diagnose too. FACT-FILE AS often affects the lower part of the spine and the part where it joins the hip [sacroiliac joints] AS may be difficult to diagnose, although it has an exacting blueprint of pain symptoms. This can deciphered on X-ray and MRI There is no all-inclusive cure for ankylosing spondylitis, albeit pain and inflammation could be managed with homeopathic treatment, physical and other auxiliary, or supportive, treatment. This not only relieves pain, but also prevents some of the deleterious, more worrisome effects of AS. SYMPTOMS Pain Stiffness Loss of mobility. Pain is the foremost symptom of ankylosing spondylitis, especially in the lower back and buttock areas, more so in the early stages of the disorder. While it is agreed that lower back pain is a significant symptom, the inflammation may not always be confined to the spine. It may, on the other hand, be systemic — where the location of inflammation and pain may be related to other parts of the body, such as: In other joints [with arthritic and synovitis, or inflammatory, symptoms] The neck The top of the shin bone in the lower leg Behind the heel of the foot [inflammation in the tendo-Achilles, or Achilles’ tendon] The heel of the foot. The disorder can cause bony fusion, or overgrowth of bones at the joints. This could make it difficult for the individual to perform every day, routine tasks. In certain cases, the problem can limit the normal movement of the chest, along with breathing difficulty. Individuals with ankylosing spondylitis may also complain of physical exhaustion, or fatigue, and a feeling of tiredness and low energy — for most part of the day. BAMBOO: THE USEFUL HOMEOPATHIC MEDICINE FOR ‘AS’ According to reports and articles published by the British Homeopathic Association, among others, Berndt Schuster conducted a proving of a species of bamboo, Bambusa Arundinacea, some years ago. This is em­erging as a key homeopathic remedy for a wide variety of clinical con­ditions, including AS. The homeopathic remedy is made from the tincture of bam­boo shoots; it contains phytooestra­gens and is rich in silica. This has, according to medical records and literature, been used medicinally since ancient times for conditions, such as cancer, leprosy, tuberculosis, menstrual problems, and disorders of the spine, among other ailments too. The primary physical “sensation as if,” as published in homeopathic literature explains, is of stiffness — the stiffness is painful, profound and prolonged, like wood, or heavy weight, felt in the bones, the joints and the muscles. The painful wooden stiffness is extremely worse after a night in bed, or sleep. It is eased by applied heat — a hot shower, or bath, or heat pad. The stiffness is worse from cold, or cold weather, before and during periods, in women, and when there is a headache. The stiffness affects primarily the spine and joints near the axis of the body — viz., shoulders and hips. That homeopathic medicine made from Bambusa Arundinacea is emerg­ing as a major remedy in ankylosing spondylitis is based, first and foremost, on the following details: Painful neck stiffness, where the AS patient often wants to support the neck by rest­ing their chin on their hands There is aggravation from rest and cold; symptoms are relieved by heat. The individual may not be restless, but often feels worse when there are weather, or temperature, changes. Homeopathy has proved to be useful in the treatment of persistent pain [such as that occurs in ankylosing spondylitis]. Homeopathic remedies, or medicines, and professional treatment offer good pain relief and enhance the quality of life [QoL] for such individuals, or patients. In addition, homeopathic treatment is suggested to help slow down the progression of the disorder. For the best results, it is imperative for one to seek the advice of a professional homeopath and follow their treatment plan in the best manner possible — for good, long-term outcomes.

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