With the advent of classification criteria for psoriatic arthritis (PsA) and axial spondyloarthritis (axSpA), patients with axial manifestations associated with psoriasis, initially described in the l950s as a specific entity termed psoriatic spondylitis (PS), are now categorized within PsA, ankylosing spondylitis (AS), and axSpA. Thus, different terms are used to describe axial disease in patients with PsA including PS, axial psoriatic arthritis (axPsA), and psoriatic spondyloarthritis. Patients with PS may present with inflammatory and/or mechanical back pain, but also may display axial disease on imaging despite not complaining of back pain. Cervical spondylitis has been reported in 35% to 75% of patients with PsA. Axial disease is silent in 20% and 25% of patients with axial PsA and PsA, respectively. The majority of axPsA patients have peripheral arthritis alongside the axial involvement, whereas only 2% to 5% of PsA patients have solely axial arthritis with no peripheral arthritis.A debate is currently underway as to whether inflammatory axial disease and psoriasis represent axSpA with psoriasis or a subset of PsA named axPsA. Studies have recognized that axial disease in PsA patients seems to be different demographically, genetically, clinically, and radiographically when compared with AS with or without psoriasis. This narrative review summarizes current knowledge regarding axial involvement of PsA in terms of history, terminology, classification, epidemiology, clinical presentation, imaging, diagnosis, and treatment, with the aim of providing advice for management of PS in clinical evidence-based practice. Data-driven studies are needed to develop clear, nonoverlapping classification criteria for spinal involvement in PsA.
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