, Volume 8, Issue 4, pp 255-259

The role of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications and exercise in the treatment of ankylosing spondylitis

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Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is a chronic systemic rheumatic disease that primarily affects the sacroiliac joints and spine. Even with the development of tumor necrosis factor-α inhibitors, which have revolutionized the treatment of this disease, the combination of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), physical therapy, and a life-long exercise program still form the first step in its management. Multiple clinical trials have addressed the efficacy and safety of both nonselective and selective NSAIDs. Gastrointestinal toxicity remains their major side effect, with increased concern about the potential of cardiovascular toxicity, especially with the selective cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitors. A specific set of recommendations has been proposed for the management of AS.