Non-radiographic axial spondyloarthritis (nr-axSpA): A disproportionate issue for women
While ankylosing spondylosis (AS) affects men:women in a 2:1 ratio, the opposite is true for nr-axSpA, where up to two-thirds of patients are women.1
nr-axSpA disproportionately affects women.1
In general, axSpA is identified later in women than in men. This may be because women have less severe or slower progression of radiographic damage, even after years of symptoms.1,2
Despite no visible damage on x-ray, nr-axSpA has a comparable symptom burden to AS.3
Furthermore, symptoms may overlap with those of fibromyalgia, another syndrome that affects more women than men. This can also contribute to diagnostic delays for women with axSpA.4,5
axSpA presents differently in women vs men
Women and men with axSpA may present with different symptom clusters, with women demonstrating more peripheral pain than men.*6
*Study participants were diagnosed with AS.6
AS, ankylosing spondylitis; axSpA, axial spondyloarthritis; nr-axSpA, non-radiographic axial spondyloarthritis.
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- Baraliakos X, et al. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2018;57(9):1541–1547.
- Lee W, et al. Ann Rheum Dis. 2007;66(5):633-638.