Clinical history as a screening test for ankylosing spondylitis

JAMA. 1977 Jun 13;237(24):2613-4.


A controlled study of 138 subjects demonstrated that the clinical history may be sensitive (95%) and specific (85%) in the differential diagnosis of ankylosing spondylitis when reliance of five specific historic features is made. Back pain that is insidious in onset, in a patient younger than 40 years, persisting for at least three months, associated with morning stiffness and improving with exercise is characteristic of inflammatory spinal disease.

MeSH terms

  • Back Pain / diagnosis*
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • HLA Antigens
  • Histocompatibility Testing
  • Humans
  • Medical History Taking
  • Methods
  • Spondylitis, Ankylosing / diagnosis*
  • Spondylitis, Ankylosing / epidemiology
  • Spondylitis, Ankylosing / immunology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • United States


  • HLA Antigens