Personal profile

Academic Background

Karl Gaffney (MB, BCh, BAO Hons, FRCPI, FRCP) has been a Consultant Rheumatologist in Norwich since 1995 where he is service lead for axial spondyloarthritis (including ankylosing spondylitis), adolescent rheumatology and osteoporosis. He is an Honorary Professor at Norwich Medical School, chair of the medical advisory board, National Axial Spondyloarthritis Society (, founder member, treasurer and chair-elect of BRITSpA (, chair of the British Society for Rheumatology (BSR) axial SpA Biologics Guidelines Committee, member of the National Early Inflammatory Arthritis Project Working Group, vice-chair of the BSR Heberden Committee, associate editor Rheumatology (, co-director and founder of the East of England and London Spondyloarthritis Academy (, and an invited member of the Assessment of Spondyloarthritis International Society He has also represented the BSR and NASS at the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) appraisal of biological therapies since 2007. He was Rheumatology Service Director from 2008 until 2016, Director of Postgraduate Education in Norwich between 1999 and 2005, and Director of Rheumatology Training, Eastern Deanery between 2001 and 2007.


With NASS he has co-developed primary and secondary care educational programmes for healthcare professionals including Back Pain Seminars, Meeting in a Box, Back in Focus, Solving Spondyloarthritis ,RCGP elearning modules, NASS Allies and Back Pain Plus These initiatives have been awarded national and European awards for excellence in healthcare communication. He is leading the NASS National Gold Standard Delay to Diagnosis project, launched at the House of Commons in July 2020



His current research interests include epidemiology, dose optimisation and extra-articular manifestations of axial SpA. He oversees a large clinical trials programme and collaborates with other national and international centres. He has published extensively and has been an invited speaker at national and international meetings.

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or