This guideline covers diagnosing and managing spondyloarthritis that is suspected or confirmed in adults who are 16 years or older. It aims to raise awareness of the features of spondyloarthritis and provide clear advice on what action to take when people with signs and symptoms first present in healthcare settings. It also provides advice on the range of treatments available.
In June 2017, we updated recommendation 1.2.7 to clarify the advice on what imaging should be done.
This guideline includes recommendations on:
- recognition and referral
- diagnosing spondyloarthritis in specialist care
- managing spondyloarthritis
- information and support
Who is it for?
- Healthcare professionals
- Commissioners and providers
- People with spondyloarthritis and their families and carers
Guideline development process
The recommendations in this guideline represent the view of NICE, arrived at after careful consideration of the evidence available. When exercising their judgement, professionals and practitioners are expected to take this guideline fully into account, alongside the individual needs, preferences and values of their patients or the people using their service. It is not mandatory to apply the recommendations, and the guideline does not override the responsibility to make decisions appropriate to the circumstances of the individual, in consultation with them and their families and carers or guardian.
Local commissioners and providers of healthcare have a responsibility to enable the guideline to be applied when individual professionals and people using services wish to use it. They should do so in the context of local and national priorities for funding and developing services, and in light of their duties to have due regard to the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, to advance equality of opportunity and to reduce health inequalities. Nothing in this guideline should be interpreted in a way that would be inconsistent with complying with those duties.
Commissioners and providers have a responsibility to promote an environmentally sustainable health and care system and should assess and reduce the environmental impact of implementing NICE recommendations wherever possible.