Thanks for taking the time to visit my JustGiving page.
I am taking on this challenge to help raise awareness of Ankylosing Spondylitis or AS for short. This is a condition that I had not heard of until my wife was diagnosed with it a couple of years before we got married. It is a painful inflammatory arthritis that mainly affects the spine but can also affect other joints, tendons and ligaments. It affects 200000 people in the UK alone!
My wife had symptoms from when she was 18 but only got diagnosed when she was 25. Since then we have discovered that the average time it takes to get diagnosed is 8.5 years.
Although it wasn't a pleasant diagnosis to get, once she knew what the cause of all her pain was it made it easier to get help and proper treatment to slow the progression of the disease.
I'm organising this event to try and raise awareness of AS and to help the National Ankylosing Spondylitis Society, a charity that helps support people with AS living in the UK. They work to help raise awareness and educate people about the symptoms of AS, in order to help reduce the diagnosis time. They have branches all over the UK that help people with AS get specialist physiotherapy and support them to stay control of their lives and maintain their quality of life.
Donating through JustGiving is simple, fast and totally secure. Your details are safe with JustGiving - they'll never sell them on or send unwanted emails. Once you donate, they'll send your money directly to the charity. So it's the most efficient way to donate - saving time and cutting costs for the charity.
Some information about Axial SpAAxial Spondyloarthritis (axial SpA) is an inflammatory arthritis where the main symptom is back pain
Axial spondyloarthritis is an umbrella term and it includes:
Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS)
Where changes to the sacroiliac joints or the spine can be seen on x-ray.
Non-radiographic axial spondyloarthritis
Where x-ray changes are not present but inflammation is visible on MRI or you have symptoms.
Around 7 in 10 people with non-radiographic axial spondyloarthritis have visible inflammation in the sacroiliac joints or the spine when an MRI of the back is carried out.
Around 3 in 10 may not have any inflammation visible on MRI despite symptoms of back pain. Some may never go on to develop visible inflammation on MRI. The reasons for this are still not well understood but may be due to the sensitivity of MRI.Typical symptoms of axial SpA (AS) include:
- Slow or gradual onset of back pain and stiffness over weeks or months, rather than hours or days
- Early-morning stiffness and pain, wearing off or reducing during the day with exercise
- Persistence for more than 3 months (as opposed to coming on in short attacks)
- Feeling better after exercise and worse after rest
- Weight loss, especially in the early stages
- Fatigue or tiredness
- Feeling feverish and experiencing night sweats