Ankylosing spondylitis in Rochester, Minnesota, 1935-1989. Is the epidemiology changing?

Arthritis Rheum. 1992 Dec;35(12):1476-82. doi: 10.1002/art.1780351211.


Objective: To determine trends in the incidence and clinical presentation of ankylosing spondylitis first diagnosed between 1935 and 1989 among residents of Rochester, Minnesota, and in the survival of the patients.

Methods: Population-based descriptive study.

Results: The overall age- and sex-adjusted incidence rate was 7.3 per 100,000 person-years (95% confidence interval 6.1-8.4). The rate tended to decline between 1935 and 1989, but there was little change in the age at symptom onset or diagnosis over the 55-year study period. Overall survival was not decreased up to 28 years following diagnosis.

Conclusion: These data indicate that there is a constancy in the epidemiologic characteristics of ankylosing spondylitis and suggest that previously study results indicating changes may have been due to biases in patient selection and study design.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Minnesota / epidemiology
  • Spondylitis, Ankylosing / epidemiology*
  • Spondylitis, Ankylosing / mortality