Article

Diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis may give the typical postural abnormalities of advanced ankylosing spondylitis.

Rheumatology Department of Lucania, San Carlo Hospital, Contrada Macchia Romana, 85100 Potenza, Italy.
Rheumatology (Impact Factor: 4.21). 12/2007; 46(11):1709-11. DOI: 10.1093/rheumatology/kem227
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT To describe a case-series of patients who presented with the typical postural abnormalities of long-standing advanced ankylosing spondylitis (AS) but were instead found to suffer from diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis (DISH).
We enrolled consecutive patients who showed postural abnormalities, which at first suggested to us the diagnosis of long-standing advanced AS, although the diagnostic process led us to the correct diagnosis of DISH. Each patient had a complete physical examination and radiographs of the spine and pelvis, and was investigated for HLA-B27 locus typing.
From 15 June 1998 to 15 June 2006, 15 patients with DISH were seen who presented with the typical postural abnormalities of long-standing advanced AS. All patients were males with a median age of 69 yrs (range 51-91). All lacked HLA-B27 and denied personal or family history of spondyloarthritis. All measurements assessing cervical, thoracic and lumbar spinal movement were abnormal.
Patients suffering from DISH can occasionally have severe limitations of spinal mobility, along with postural abnormalities that resemble long-standing advanced AS. Thus, the differential diagnosis between DISH and advanced AS is not limited to the radiological findings and can also extend to the clinical findings in the two diseases, as is highlighted by our report.

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    ABSTRACT: Diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis (DISH) is a systemic condition characterized by the ossification and calcification of ligaments and entheses. DISH is observed on all continents and in all races, but most commonly in men over 50 years of age. Although DISH is asymptomatic in most individuals, the condition is often an indicator of underlying metabolic disease, and the presence of spinal or extraspinal ossifications can sometimes lead to symptoms including pain, stiffness, a reduced range of articular motion, and dysphagia, as well as increasing the risk of unstable spinal fractures. The aetiology of DISH is poorly understood, and the roles of the many factors that might be involved in the development of excess bone are not well delineated. The study of pathophysiological aspects of DISH is made difficult by the formal diagnosis requiring the presence of multiple contiguous fully formed bridging ossifications, which probably represent advanced stages of DISH. In this Review, the reader is provided with an up-to-date discussion of the epidemiological, aetiological and clinical aspects of DISH. Existing classification criteria (which, in the absence of diagnostic criteria, are used to establish a diagnosis of DISH) are also considered, together with the need for modified criteria that enable timely identification of early phases in the development of DISH.
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    ABSTRACT: Both spondylosis and diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis (DISH) are prevalent in humans and are considered distinct entities. Nowadays, the term spondylosis is in the biomedical literature mostly used when also degenerative disc disease is present. In companion animals, many reports on spondylosis, often without intervertebral disc degeneration, are described. The nomenclature and the definitions of both spondylosis and DISH in the biomedical and veterinary literature should be more in line to facilitate comparison. DISH occurs in dogs but has not been described in cats yet. DISH and spondylosis can co-occur in dogs in one animal. Boxers may serve as translational disease models for the elucidation of the gene(s) involved in the (etio)pathogenesis of DISH or serve as a test population for newly developed treatment options.
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