For US Healthcare Professionals

Examine the burden of disease of axSpA and how it negatively impacts a patient’s life

The prevalence of comorbidities in patients with axSpA

Comorbidities are associated with higher disease activity and higher levels of functional impairment.1 The identification and treatment of comorbidities are needed for a holistic, patient-tailored management strategy in axSpA.1

~83% of patients with axSpA experience at least one comorbidity1:

have 1–2 comorbid


have 3–4 comorbid


have 5 or more
comorbid conditions

Common comorbidities in patients with axSpA include:

Depression and anxiety2 Fibromyalgia2 Hypothyroidism1 Cardiovascular disease3,5 Pulmonary disease3 Sarcopenia4 Osteoporosis5 Gastrointestinal disorders2 Depression and anxiety2 Hypothyroidism1 Pulmonary disease3 Sarcopenia4 Osteoporosis5 Fibromyalgia2 Cardiovascular disease3,5 Gastrointestinal disorders2

The total burden of disease of axSpA

The symptoms associated with axSpA can negatively impact various aspects of a patient’s life.6

  • Stiffness, immobility, pain, and fatigue can result in limited physical functioning and impact activities of daily living
  • Patients with axSpA often have difficulty sleeping
  • Loss of spinal mobility can result in limited or reduced work productivity and leisure activities

Overall, axSpA is associated with increases in all-cause mortality similar to what is seen in other autoimmune conditions.7 These increases are primarily linked to cardiovascular disease and respiratory disease.7,8

It is important to consider all aspects of disease activity when managing patients with axSpA—from specific measures of the individual clinical manifestations to assessing the impact on a patient’s quality of life.1,6

Explore disease outcome measures used for axSpA in our exhibit

How can underlying causes of disease affect the burden to patients?

A deeper understanding of the pathological processes that cause certain disease manifestations may impact patients’ burden of disease.

Gaze upon the Gallery of Cytokines


axSpA outcomes

Explore different disease outcome measures and their importance in defining axSpA disease activity in clinical practice.

Continue axSpA tour Back to: Clinical manifestations


Clinical manifestations

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  1. Redeker I, Callhoff J, Hoffmann F, et al. The prevalence and impact of comorbidities on patients with axial spondyloarthritis: results from a nationwide population-based study. Arthritis Res Ther. 2020;22(1):210. Published 2020. doi:10.1186/s13075-020-02301-0
  2. Rosenbaum JT, Pisenti L, Park Y, Howard RA. Insight into the quality of life of patients with ankylosing spondylitis: real-world data from a US-based life impact survey. Rheumatol Ther. 2019;6(3):353-367.
  3. Momeni M, Taylor N, Tehrani M. Cardiopulmonary manifestations of ankylosing spondylitis. Int J Rheumatol. 2011;2011:728471. doi:10.1155/2011/728471
  4. Fitzgerald G, O’Shea F. High prevalence of sarcopenia in axial spondyloarthropathy cohort 2017. ACR/AHRP Annual Meeting. Available at: [Accessed March 2022]
  5. Moltó A, Nikiphorou E. Comorbidities in spondyloarthritis. Front Med (Lausanne). 2018;5:62. Published 2018. doi:10.3389/fmed.2018.00062
  6. Strand V, J. A. Singh. Patient burden of axial spondyloarthritis. J Clin Rheumatol. 2017;23(7):383-391.
  7. Kerola AM, Kazemi A, Rollefstad S, et al. All-cause and cause-specific mortality in rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis and axial spondyloarthritis: a nationwide registry study. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2022;keac210. doi: 10.1093/rheumatology/keac210.
  8. Wang R, Ward MM. Epidemiology of axial spondyloarthritis: an update. Curr Opin Rheumatol. 2018;30(2):137-143. doi: 10.1097/BOR.0000000000000475.