I had pain in my back for months. I just assumed I strained it lifting something.
-Andrew, AS Patient
Lower back pain is a common health problem. It is typically caused by injury or strain to the back,
known as mechanical back pain. But your back pain could also be signaling a more serious
condition. Learn more.
Francis shares his journey living with ankylosing spondylitis and being on HUMIRA.
I want those struggling with AS to know that there are treatment options available.
"It seems like such a long journey when I reflect back on how far I have come since I first started
having symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis (AS). When people hear of AS, they typically think of
lower back pain and stiffness. However, my symptoms actually began with my eyes, hands and
My symptoms started my senior year of high school. I experienced occasional bouts of uveitis (inflammation of part of the eye) and developed joint pain in my hands and feet several years later.
I also began to experience sciatic pain that was triggered just by doing ordinary things like
standing. As the symptoms worsened, I became more fearful. Here I was, in my twenties, with pain
so bad that at times I couldn't even sleep at night. Fortunately, my ophthalmologist recognized this group of symptoms and referred me to a rheumatologist. After blood work, X-rays and a physical
exam, my rheumatologist diagnosed me with ankylosing spondylitis. I sat down with my parents
and doctors to discuss possible treatment options. After weighing all the information, I decided to
move forward and start treatment with HUMIRA.
Since starting HUMIRA, I've been very pleased with the results. Although it took years to be
officially diagnosed with AS, I am grateful to the physicians that took care of me throughout the
process. One of the most useful things that my rheumatologist emphasized was to remain active
—especially stretching every day. Also, it's important to regularly speak with family, friends, as well
as your physician about your symptoms, and to have a network of people you can rely on for help
when your symptoms become too severe. Fortunately, my back symptoms have improved, and
I've been able to look ahead in life. I want those struggling with AS to know that there are
treatment options available to help manage and relieve their AS symptoms."
It was a surprise to finally know what was causing my back pain.
–Karen, AS Patient
I was relieved to find out there were treatments that might work for me.
Take control of your own story
Talk to a rheumatologist about your symptoms
My doctor told me the fire is burning within you. You need a biologic. Go to your doctor or rheumatologist now.
-Mamta, AS Patient
HUMIRA has been proven to relieve the signs and symptoms of ankylosing spondylitis. Doctors have been prescribing HUMIRA to treat their AS patients for 10 years. Learn more.
My back symptoms started to improve,
–Holly, AS Patient
and I started to get back to my routines.
What to Expect
Your safety is important to us.
Learn about our Important Safety Information.
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION
ABOUT HUMIRA® (adalimumab)1
You should discuss the potential benefits and risks of HUMIRA with your doctor. HUMIRA is a TNF blocker medicine that can lower the ability of your immune system to fight infections. You should not start taking HUMIRA if you have any kind of infection unless your doctor says it is okay.
Serious infections have happened in people taking HUMIRA. These serious infections include tuberculosis (TB) and infections caused by viruses, fungi, or bacteria that have spread throughout the body. Some people have died from these infections. Your doctor should test you for TB before starting HUMIRA, and check you closely for signs and symptoms of TB during treatment with HUMIRA, even if your TB test was negative. If your doctor feels you are at risk, you may be treated with medicine for TB.
Cancer. For children and adults taking TNF blockers, including HUMIRA, the chance of getting lymphoma or other cancers may increase. There have been cases of unusual cancers in children, teenagers, and young adults using TNF blockers. Some people have developed a rare type of cancer called hepatosplenic T-cell lymphoma. This type of cancer often results in death. If using TNF blockers including HUMIRA, your chance of getting two types of skin cancer (basal cell and squamous cell) may increase. These types are generally not life-threatening if treated; tell your doctor if you have a bump or open sore that doesn’t heal.
Tell your doctor about all of your health conditions, including if you:
- Have an infection, are being treated for infection, or have symptoms of an infection
- Get a lot of infections or infections that keep coming back
- Have diabetes
- Have TB or have been in close contact with someone with TB, or were born in, lived in, or traveled where there is more risk for getting TB
- Live or have lived in an area (such as the Ohio and Mississippi River valleys) where there is an increased risk for getting certain kinds of fungal infections, such as histoplasmosis, coccidioidomycosis, or blastomycosis. These infections may happen or become more severe if you use HUMIRA. Ask your doctor if you are unsure if you have lived in these areas.
- Have or have had hepatitis B
- Are scheduled for major surgery
- Have or have had cancer
- Have numbness or tingling or a nervous system disease such as multiple sclerosis or Guillain-Barré syndrome
- Have or had heart failure
- Have recently received or are scheduled to receive a vaccine. HUMIRA patients may receive vaccines, except for live vaccines. Children should be brought up to date on all vaccines before starting HUMIRA.
- Are allergic to rubber, latex, or any HUMIRA ingredients
- Are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning to breastfeed
- Have a baby and you were using HUMIRA during your pregnancy. Tell your baby’s doctor before your baby receives any vaccines
Also tell your doctor about all the medicines you take. You should not take HUMIRA with ORENCIA® (abatacept), KINERET® (anakinra), REMICADE® (infliximab), ENBREL® (etanercept), CIMZIA® (certolizumab pegol), or SIMPONI® (golimumab). Tell your doctor if you have ever used RITUXAN® (rituximab), IMURAN® (azathioprine), or PURINETHOL® (mercaptopurine, 6-MP).
HUMIRA can cause serious side effects, including:
- Serious infections. These include TB and infections caused by viruses, fungi, or bacteria. Symptoms related to TB include a cough, low-grade fever, weight loss, or loss of body fat and muscle.
- Hepatitis B infection in carriers of the virus. Symptoms include muscle aches, feeling very tired, dark urine, skin or eyes that look yellow, little or no appetite, vomiting, clay-colored bowel movements, fever, chills, stomach discomfort, and skin rash.
- Allergic reactions. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction include hives, trouble breathing, and swelling of your face, eyes, lips, or mouth.
- Nervous system problems. Signs and symptoms include numbness or tingling, problems with your vision, weakness in your arms or legs, and dizziness.
- Blood problems (decreased blood cells that help fight infections or stop bleeding). Symptoms include a fever that does not go away, bruising or bleeding very easily, or looking very pale.
- Heart failure (new or worsening). Symptoms include shortness of breath, swelling of your ankles or feet, and sudden weight gain.
- Immune reactions including a lupus-like syndrome. Symptoms include chest discomfort or pain that does not go away, shortness of breath, joint pain, or rash on your cheeks or arms that gets worse in the sun.
- Liver problems. Symptoms include feeling very tired, skin or eyes that look yellow, poor appetite or vomiting, and pain on the right side of your stomach (abdomen). These problems can lead to liver failure and death.
- Psoriasis (new or worsening). Symptoms include red scaly patches or raised bumps that are filled with pus.
Call your doctor or get medical care right away if you develop any of the above symptoms.
Common side effects of HUMIRA include injection site reactions (pain, redness, rash, swelling, itching, or bruising), upper respiratory infections (sinus infections), headaches, rash, and nausea. These are not all of the possible side effects with HUMIRA. Tell your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.
- Fever, sweats, or chills
- Muscle aches
- Shortness of breath
- Blood in phlegm
- Weight loss
- Warm, red, or painful skin or sores on your body
- Diarrhea or stomach pain
- Burning when you urinate
- Urinating more often than normal
- Feeling very tired
HUMIRA is given by injection under the skin.
HUMIRA is a prescription medicine used:
- To reduce the signs and symptoms of:
- Moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in adults. HUMIRA can be used alone, with methotrexate, or with certain other medicines. HUMIRA may prevent further damage to your bones and joints and may help your ability to perform daily activities.
- Moderate to severe polyarticular juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) in children 2 years of age and older. HUMIRA can be used alone, with methotrexate, or with certain other medicines.
- Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) in adults. HUMIRA can be used alone or with certain other medicines. HUMIRA may prevent further damage to your bones and joints and may help your ability to perform daily activities.
- Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) in adults.
- Moderate to severe Crohn's disease (CD) and to achieve and maintain clinical remission in adults who have not responded well to certain other medications. HUMIRA is also used to reduce signs and symptoms and to achieve clinical remission in these adults who have lost response to or are unable to tolerate infliximab.
- Moderate to severe Crohn's disease (CD) and to achieve and maintain clinical remission in children 6 years of age and older when certain other treatments have not worked well enough.
- Moderate to severe hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) in adults.
- In adults, to help get moderate to severe ulcerative colitis (UC) under control (induce remission) and keep it under control (sustain remission) when certain other medicines have not worked well enough. It is not known if HUMIRA is effective in people who stopped responding to or could not tolerate anti-TNF medicines.
- To treat moderate to severe chronic plaque psoriasis (Ps) in adults who are ready for systemic therapy or phototherapy, and are under the care of a doctor who will decide if other systemic therapies are less appropriate.
- To treat non-infectious intermediate (middle part of the eye), posterior (back of the eye) and panuveitis (all parts of the eye) (UV) in adults.