Ankylosing spondylitis

Case contributed by Dr Ian Bickle


Retired man with acute on chronic neck pain. High clinical concern resulted in CT following limited plain film views.

Patient Data

Age: 65 years old
Gender: Male

Aside from an open degenerative C5/C6 intervertebral disc space, the whole of the cervical spine is ankylosed.


The florid ankylosis of the whole visualized cervicothoracic spine is illustrated.

The angulation at C5/C6 is due to this being the only remaining non-fused intervertebral disc space.

The C5/C6 disc space is degenerative.


The rigid structure if bamboo from which the name of an ankylosed spine is rightly derived.

Case Discussion

Ankylosing spondylitis is a form of negative spondyloarthritides, nearly exclusively affecting males.

This is characterized with ankylosis of the spine and sacroiliac joints, forming in the most extreme cases a bamboo spine - the spine ankylosing into one rigid 'block' of bone, which is resultingly extremely susceptible to fracture.

PlayAdd to Share

Case information

rID: 26910
Published: 13th Jan 2014
Last edited: 14th Aug 2019
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

Updating… Please wait.

 Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

 Thank you for updating your details.