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Interview: Catching Up with Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons About His Battle With a Chronic Disease

Grammy award-winning recording artist Dan Reynolds continues to use his voice to help others like him who struggle with a chronic and potentially debilitating disease.


The lead singer of the multi-platinum, band, Imagine Dragons, has earned legions of fans worldwide with sold-out tours and a string of chart-topping songs including “Radioactive” and “Thunder.”


Imagine Dragons Frontman Dan Reynolds Reveals Health Condition


While the band dominates the charts, Dan has been living with ankylosing spondylitis (AS)—a painful disease that most people probably aren’t familiar with—for more than a decade. Dan was diagnosed with AS in his early 20s, and three of his brothers also have AS.


Dan continues his efforts to make a difference in the lives of others by supporting several causes, including his work as an advocate for the AS community. Recently, Reynolds has been working with Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation to launch Monster Pain in the AS, a national campaign to raise awareness of unexplained back pain that may be AS.


For Dan, unexplained back pain is personal. After years of living with intense and unexplained back pain, Dan finally found the right doctor, a rheumatologist, who helped him find answers and a treatment plan that worked for him. He says this was “the greatest feeling in the world.”


This is why Dan continues to speak publicly about his AS, in hopes of encouraging others living with persistent, unexplained back pain to seek diagnosis and care. Some 2.7 million people in the United States are thought to have AS and related conditions. But because it’s underdiagnosed, the numbers may be even higher.


I caught up with Imagine Dragons frontman Dan Reynolds to discuss his journey since the last time we spoke, the challenges living with unexplained back pain that may be AS, and how to find help. Rheumatologist Dr. Hillary Norton, who also has AS, joined him to share the signs and symptoms of AS, her unique perspective on the disease, and the importance of getting a correct diagnosis.

Wife. Mom. Believer. Writer. Advocate.

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