Discussions By Condition: Autoimmune Disease

backspasm, neck, shoulder, buttock aches >ankylosing spondylitis

Posted In: Autoimmune Disease 13 Replies
  • Posted By: sinned69
  • January 23, 2007
  • 00:27 PM

Hi there all.
I'm a NZ'er working in Mainland China, been here 4yrs now, have had an interesting time of it. For those of you who've never been, throw all your pre-conceptions away, this place ranges from very developed through to underdeveloped and everything in between.
OK, so what about me & my health problem???

I'm a male, 41yo. Wt= 90kg, Ht=180cm, BP=130/90, P=68 bpm at rest, T=36.9'C (37.4'C is normal). Don't drink much alcohol, I also don't take medications for anything, and was until recently exercising three times per week. Have no other medical conditions or ailments.

Recently I developed some backpain in mid-December, which I put down to a couple of recent events;
1. Long extended motorbike rides for anything from 6 hours on average through to 12 hours. for increase frequency in through the months of Oct-Nov.
2. Recent flooring and wall painting (mural) work I've been doing for the past month (Oct into mid-December).

The backpain itself is more toward the sides away from the spine rather central pain of the spine. The type of pain is more a spasm or occasional ache. It'd occur during sleep. I'd be woken several times throughout the early morning with my upper back muscles going into painful spasms. no other symptoms initially, & no loss of sensation or motor function.

I went to a local Hospital to have a medical assessment, started out with blood tests; CBC, Liver Function Test, Kidney Function Test, Hepatitis screening, plus Urinalysis, Ultrasound Scan (USS) of my chest, kidneys, liver etc X-Ray of my spine.

In-terms of the X-Ray everything came back normal, no abnormalities noted on X-Ray. The USS showed slight enlarged left kidney, but given that I have a congenital abnormality in that I was born with only a left kidney it kind of make sense that one kidney would be a little larger on a 180cm tall 90kg male.

My other results though were another story (only included the abnormal results, all other results are within normal range and are not posted here).
tests on 30/12/2006
MO monocytes elevated
HCT hematocrit decreased
PLT platelets elevated
ESR erythrocyte segmentation rate elevated
NEU neutrophils elevated
GLO globulin elevated
A/G ratio albumin/globulin decreased
ALT (SGPT) alanine aminotransferase elevated
BUN blood urea nitrogen elevated
UA uric acid elevated
CRP c-reactive protein elevated
consequently further tests were ordered.
spinal CT = normal
spinal MRI = normal
head-pelvis MRI (all organs & spine included) = normal
(yes two separate MRI's completed on different dates)

by now taking occasional NSAID (Voltalin) prn.

more blood work 3/01/2007...
MO monocytes normal
HCT hematocrit decreased (unchanged value)
PLT platelets elevated (slightly higher than last)
ESR erythrocyte sedimentation rate elevated (slightly higher than last)
NEU neutrophils normal
GLO globulin elevated (unchanged value)
A/G ratio albumin/globulin decreased (unchanged value)
ALT (SGPT) alanine aminotransferase normal
BUN blood urea nitrogen elevated (slightly lower than last)
UA uric acid elevated (slightly higher than last)

more blood work 8/01/2007...
PLT platelets elevated
ESR erythrocyte sedimentation rate elevated
NEU neutrophils elevated
GLO globulin elevated
A/G ratio albumin/globulin decreased
ALT (SGPT) alanine aminotransferase elevated
BUN blood urea nitrogen elevated
UA uric acid elevated
CRP c-reactive protein elevated
GGT Gamma-glutamyl transferase slightly elevated
OSM osmolarity decreased

more blood work 10/01/2007...
GLO globulin elevated
A/G ratio albumin/globulin decreased
ALT (SGPT) alanine aminotransferase elevated
BUN blood urea nitrogen elevated
UA uric acid elevated
CRP c-reactive protein elevated
GGT Gamma-glutamyl transferase slightly elevated
OSM osmolarity decreased
Na sodium decreased

also checked were HIV, Hep A-C, RF, ASO, AFP, CEA, PSA-HYB, Fer, GIIUO,
all = normal or negative.
then checked immunity status...
IgG elevated
IgM normal
IgA elevated
C3 elevated
C4 normal
RF normal
ASO normal

then had special immunology blood serum test sent to special testing lab.ANA, dsDNA, nRNP, Sm, Ro, La, SCL-70, J0-1, ACA, M2, histone, FCT, action, Lamin, PM-SCL, vimentin, NOR-90, pANCA, cANCA, ARPA
..all negative.

HLA-B27 protein positive
USS, Radiology, CAT scan, full body MRI... all clear.


had some some treatment using "TEMS" machine to treat muscle spasms, also used hot water bottles at night and tried not to use the NSAIDs or meds, since my liver & kidney having a hard time of it according to blood results.

other pointers.
recent outbreak of chickenpox in local international school, some of the children I had come into contact with due to my employment, though I had chickenpox when I was a child. Wondered about shingles, though I didn't have any outbreak/rash. Wondered about Lymes disease, though that didn't seem to fit. (I'd had a bad case of gastroenteritis about 6 years ago in Thailand before clearing up after a week at which time I traveled as planned to Indonesia. In Indonesia I developed ?gout or reactive arthritis to whatever the offending organism was at the time, though I never made the connection. I did seek medical assistance at that time, but it was initially put down to a some kind of insect bite. many types of medications later, and swelling which had progressed from a swollen L) index finger to opposite ankle/foot then later L) knee, until finally an internist at another hospital felt I had contracted typhoid, which was not treated and then had crossed the intestinal membrane and caused a reactive arthritis). Hence the Lymes disease, though it doesn't fit completely.

Back to the current situation at hand.
The back spasms have settled perhaps as a normal progression of whatever I have got, or the week of rehab/physical therapy has helped. I had several days of remission before the aches returned and I found I had to take Diclofenac Na, severl times with good effect for uninterrupted sleep. Also the pain sometimes affects my shoulder muscles and right side of my neck, with an occasional ache into my buttocks/pelvic region. Doesn’t seem to be the joints as such, but rather the muscles or tendons of these areas. I seem to still have good strength in my arms and legs etc. I've had a couple of occasions where the pain affected the front wall of my chest (intercostal) muscles, where it was painful on inhalation or breathing in. I did have one day where I had an ache of my upper jaw on the right side. Wasn’t a toothache, it was an ache involving a section of the jaw at the roots of several teeth; however it resolved itself after a day.

The Dr's here are unsure of diagnosis, there's no immunologist or rheumatologist, therefore between rehab Dr, orthopedic Dr, internal medicine Dr, all have differing opinions -kind of a guessing game.
I've had many possible diagnosis offered.

Seek any suggestions or ideas, on what to consider or tests worth pursuing? Ankylosing Spondylosis?

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13 Replies:

  • i started looking at this site for information and now 4 hours all i have been doing is responding, and now i feel like a crazy person because i have so MANY issues ,,, anyway here are some of mine:hypo glycemia hypothyroidcongestive heart failure (chf)congestive cardiomyopathyfibromyalgiamuscle spacticityanxietyaddshinglesi could go on and on as i have spent 20 years trying to find out things and time has gone on and symptoms have gotten worse and conditions have also progressed.i read your postnote and remembered that i was in the hospital er for my heart beating tooo fast and hard, feeling choked, and even tho could take deep breaths, i felt like i could not get enough air- i wanted to write at the hospital oxygen helped w/other treatment. thisg that have given me relief:massage therapy, carbo controlled diet, exercise-at least stretching because that one is the bestb12 shots for boosted autoimmune, reflex releases for the core body.MOST IMPORTANTLY LOG YOUR MEDICAL RECORDS KEEP YOUR RECORDS AND BILLS BECAUSE THERE IS THE DIAGNOSIS CODESTRACK YOURSELF BECAUSE PEOPLE WON'T BELIEVE YOUSTAY AWAY FROM NEGATIVE PEOPLE PLACES AND THINGSFIND A GOOD DOCTOR YOU TRUST AND DON'T GIVE UPDO RESEARCH because i have found all my stuff by myself, its a llong process, and frustrating, but you know you can trust yourselfanyway perhaps you can help me-and if you get info please let me know and pass it onthanx
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 26, 2007
    • 02:04 AM
    • 0
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  • I am here because my sister told me to check out the site. So of course I came to Auto Immune part. I suffer from Ankylosing Spondylitis. I wanted to point out a site that may be of more help to you with some answers and just people who know what you are going through....I will not tell if I feel you have AS or not for I am not a doctor. But maybe this site will help you with some questions. I am a regular on this site and the screen name is Lemeow on the site so feel free to email through there for anything else you might want to know about me and my AS.Hugs!Lemehttp://bbs.spondylitis.org/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?YYZ=NAVBOARD
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 27, 2007
    • 04:28 AM
    • 0
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  • One more possible (and hopeful) diagnosis could simply be muscles strain due to your job. You should perhaps follow up with the physio for home exercises that will help you maintain what was done at the physio clinic.The Tens machine is not really helpful to getting your muscles feeling better it is a just a form of pain relief. Try to avoid chiropractic as well as your issue appears to be muscular/soft tissue in nature.Listen to what the Physio may recommend (ice/heat). Avoid lifting heavy object and watch your posture.If you have buttock ache in certain area it is likely due to low back issue. I noticed you had CT/MRI (did they do it on your lumbar spine?). They are three areas in your spine (cervical which is the neck, thoracic which is the mid back and lumbar which is your low spine which goes into your tail bone).This is just my simple opinion as I am not a GP but I do handle auto injuries.All the best.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 27, 2007
    • 04:54 AM
    • 0
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  • If you think it could be ankylosing spondylitis where is the HLA B27 test to confirm/negate this?
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 27, 2007
    • 08:40 AM
    • 0
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  • Woops! Sorry , I see it is there. Go and have a read of emedicine's HLA B27 Syndromes. Possibles could be reactive arthritis, reiters syndrome, psoriatic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, inflammatory bowel disease. Surely spinal abnormaility would be detected by xray if it were ankylosing spondylitis.Good luck. Hope you have just overstrained yourself.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 27, 2007
    • 08:50 AM
    • 0
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  • all the elevations in your SED rate, the CRP tests etc, all seem to point to an inflamation response to an auto immune, I'm not a doctor, however I am familiar with the lab values. Please do not feel stressed by this, but I would suggest looking into the inflammatory auto immune disorders. (SLE, although SLE is not very common in men, and other inflammarty autoimmune disorders, rhematoid arthritis)
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • sounds exactly like my symptoms from Ankylosing Spondylitis.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Seek any suggestions or ideas, on what to consider or tests worth pursuing? Ankylosing Spondylosis? Mate - been to China - know what you mean. Yes, you have the classic symptoms of AS (which by now you've probably worked out). IE - the pain area, HLA B27 protein, timing of the pain etc.. Would expect you may even have eaten something in china that triggered it off.Definatly follow that thread of thought further to ensure you get onto physio etc.. sooner rather than later.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • sounds exactly like my symptoms from Ankylosing Spondylitis.My physician have prescribed me celebrex to lower the pain. It works but my real problems are caused by the shrinking of my pulmonary volume. Any ideas? (other than exercises)
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • August 17, 2007
    • 01:39 PM
    • 0
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  • I'm very mad. I think that some doctors are sow overfulfilled of there job that they don't know anymore what they do. I had a blood vessel blockage and the doctor prescribed me generic lipitor. After I've took those pills I've found out that those pills wore for some cholesterol problem. Now my heart problem is gone but I have cholesterol problems. I don't know what should i do. I'm so confused......
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • August 28, 2007
    • 11:14 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Another helpful site for you would be kickas.org.You are HLA 27B positive so there is a chance that you do have AS. Being positive for the gene means that you will feel pain more. this gene is an amplifier of pain. Usually by age 40 you feel the effects of this disease.good luck i hope that you are able to get on this site as it is very helpful. mellie
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • September 20, 2007
    • 02:20 AM
    • 0
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  • I have had back pain now for 10 years and it has gotten to the point where I need to see a rheumatologist. I have been playing close attention to my symptoms on my back. A few months ago I had a UTI that triggered Reiter's Syndrome...which I believe is now AS because I carry the lovely HLB-B27 antigen. Now...I haven't been diagnosed with it yet and I am hoping it's Osteoarthritis...BUT...the symptoms are AS. I feel like my rib cage is already fuseing and most likely my spine is. I had a regular X-Ray done that showed arthritis after I had the UTI which showed the inflammation.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 15, 2008
    • 02:01 AM
    • 0
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  • First of all, sorry for your pain and suffering.You have the most incompetent treatment money can buy.So many unnecessary medical tests its boggles the mind.You must have great health insurance to induce the physicians to so abuse you with so many useless and irrelevant test.As I understood you chief complaint was low back pain and you gave good reasons for it: You like to abuse your self with excess biking and flooring, and other BS.Now, you've turned 40 and your body won't take it anymore.Mostly what you need is good physiotherapy.But, they are only going to teach you to do it yourself.so you can skip this step and buy: Robyn MacKinzie's (ANOTHER kIWI)TREATING YOUR OWN BACK.This is the universally used physio self treatment for your condition.Good luck and/or have fun with all of the useless, abusive medical tests
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
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