Avatar universal

High ANA

I have just gotten results on an ANA test I had done. It was 1:640. My doctor didn't really explain much but is sending me for further blood work up.

Any idea what this means?  I'm a little scared because I haven't been feeling like myself for some time.  Should I be worried?

Thanks for your help.
12 Responses
1530171 tn?1448129593
Pat, this means that the doctor must wait more tests results, as the ANA is not enough to make any diagnosis yet.

No you should not be worried, just try to improve anything you can control,
like diet, fitness, activity, refraining from any damaging bad habits.

What are your symptoms and concerns?


Avatar universal
I went for my physical and the doctor noticed a rash on my face.  I thought it was just age affects being 35 but he said he just wanted to check it.

I didn't think much about it because I've had it for a while and it's not really noticeable and doesn't itch or anything.  

I'm also tired.  That's mostly it.

I'll wait for the other tests I guess. Thx, Pat
1530171 tn?1448129593
You're only 35 Pat! Nothing to do with age.
The doctor wanted to check if it resembled the typical malar or butterfly rash, commonly associated with Lupus. It's a possibility.

One thing you can do is to rule out hypothyroid.
While I'm here, I should mention that when I had been checking out Dr.Barnes work (The Father of Hypothyroidism), one particular finding stayed with me.
From ALL the thousands of patients he treated for hypothyroid
(using natural desiccated thyroid ) NONE of these patients developed Lupus.
The ones who had been already diagnosed with Lupus, NONE developed any new signs of organ involvement, while being treated by Dr. Barnes for hypothyroid.  
Same with his student Dr. Mark Starr, whose hypothyroid patients after proper thyroid treatment, do not develop any FMS, CFS, Heart disease, Lupus etc.
Isn't this striking? Mark Starr is the author of " Hypothyroidism Type 2, The Epidemic"

You can do your own testing for this (which used to be the golden standard in the past until the "new kids on the block" -Big Pharma- when they discovered synthetic thyroid hormones and implemented the- questionable and flawed to my opinion- new serum thyroid tests)

Instructions For Taking Basal Body Temperature:
Use an ordinary oral or rectal glass (not digital) thermometer.
Shake down the thermometer the night before, and place it on your nightstand.
The first thing in the morning BEFORE you get out of bed, place the thermometer under your arm for ten(10) minutes.
Record the temperature reading and date right away!
Repeat for 10 days.
Normal Range: 97.6 to 98.2
Averages below this, indicate hypothyroidism.

Best wishes.
Avatar universal
So the thyroid could raise the ANA?  I don't usually get fevers and am cold a lot, but my doctor usually runs a thyroid test every year and it's all been normal.

I guess I'll wait and see what he wants to do next, if anything.

Only other thing is I do take a multivitamin and addional vitamin d since I was low at my physical.  Would this affect the test?
1530171 tn?1448129593
Yes, you were probably tested for TSH, T3 & T4 levels, which show normal.

Here's the controversy.  Modern lab testing used to diagnose hypothyroidism  is completely inadequate, as it totally ignores the majority of people who are still hypothyroid, even if the thyroid gland is producing thyroid hormones and even if the serum thyroid levels according to the above tests are fine,
because the thyroid hormone, simply does not make into the tissues, where it is needed (thyroid resistance or type 2 hypothyroidism).

This scenario is no different than in diabetes type 2, where  body does not properly use the insulin it makes. Can you imagine what you happen,
if the doctors would ignore this and send patients off, without treatment!

Pat, i'm not suggesting you're hypothyroid (even if it is suspect), however, in my opinion it is vital that it gets 100% ruled out.

Thyroid function, has to do mainly with energy used for maintenance, repair, healing & any other function your cells  perform, so all these processes are taking place at a sub-optimal degree when unregulated or underegulated low thyroid function is present.
Over time, serious organ or bodily system involvement will lead to the development of disease processes including autoimmune disease, thus
the elevated ANA, which is because of the response of the immune system  (producing anti-nuclear antibodies)

My suggestion, do Dr. Barnes Basal Temperature Test.

Vitamin D3, is one of the most important hormones which have to do with , yes it is a hormone,
and it also has to do with proper thyroid function, but because it is such a vital hormone in your body, I'd say that even if there's an indirect connection between low vitamin D and thyroid resistance ( your serum levels are apparently fine, right?) you should continue taking it regardless.
Vitamin D controls up to 5% of the human genome (it up or down regulates
gene expression in a large number of genes).

Be careful with multi-vitamins. Fillers, questionable quality ingredients,
fluctuating potency, potential issues with unmethylated forms of B12 and folate are some of the common concerns.
It's not the silver bullet, by any means and there may be more problems with taking a multi-vitamin than not.
This does not mean you should not take any supplements.
It means that everyone should do their homework/research, to establish their needs -everyone has different needs-  to pick the right quality, type and dose.

Hope this helps.
Avatar universal
Ok I'll check out the temperature and look into my vitamins. I have been healthy but more tired lately.

I'll let you know what I find out.  Maybe it was just a false result. Is that possible?
1530171 tn?1448129593
It could be a false positive result, but usually it happens in the lower titres.

The rash on your face, hmm. I wonder if you should do a search under
"malar rash images" online and do a comparison yourself.

Beware of some images which may be more "graphic" than the typical ones,
-they're purposely used in order to "drive" the point-
and should not be used as a yardstick when comparing.

Should it be an early symptom of Lupus, it's better to deal with it now vs later.
I don't mean to alarm you, but, it pays to be thorough and proactive when it comes to your health matters.


Avatar universal
Thanks. I will start the temperature thing in the next week or so.  The other question I have is if it is only the ANA that is high I read it could be cancer if it's not thyroid or things like lupus, so how would they check for cancer as causing the high ANA?  Could that be done with blood work?
1530171 tn?1448129593
Hi Pat.

There are more people with high ANAs than what you can imagine who may never develop cancer and others with negative ANAs who will.
Cancer diagnosis is complex and multi-faceted.
Lab testing is just one part of it.

Common Lab tests used in Oncology are:
--Blood chemistry test
--Cancer gene mutation testing
--Complete blood count (CBC)
--Cytogenetic analysis
--Sputum cytology
--Tumor marker tests
--Urine cytology

----Source: National Cancer Institute-------

Notice that ANA is not on the list of common tests for Cancer.
There are many more BTW not listed above.

What makes you suspicious of cancer?
Does it run in your family, do you have any symptoms that point to cancer?

For now, try to relax, eat well, exercise as much as your body allows you, even if it's a short walk here and there.
Watch a comedy, have the occasional glass of wine, go to a park or the forest and breathe some fresh air, listen to some Vivaldi and whatever else lifts your spirit!

Live well, Lough often, Love always!
Avatar universal
It's not that I suspect cancer but if the only positive test is the ANA, just wonder if there could be another cause.  Or will they just say lupus without checking for other things?  Or if the usual blood work is normal then it gives them an indication that it's not something like cancer?

Just don't know if I should be asking to rule other things out before landing on lupus.
434278 tn?1324706225
To help the doctors diagnose lupus, a list of 11 common criteria, or measures, was developed by the American College of Rheumatology (ACR).  If you have at least four of the criteria on the list, either at the present time or at some time in the past, there is a strong chance that you have lupus.

1. Malar rash – a rash over the cheeks and nose, often in the shape of a butterfly
2. Discoid rash – a rash that appears as red, raised, disk-shaped patches
3. Photosensitivity – a reaction to sun or light that causes a skin rash to appear or get worse
4. Oral ulcers – sores appearing in the mouth
5. Arthritis – joint pain and swelling of two or more joints in which the bones around the joints do not become destroyed
6. Serositis – inflammation of the lining around the lungs (pleuritis) or inflammation of the lining around the heart that causes chest pain which is worse with deep breathing (pericarditis)
7. Kidney disorder – persistent protein or cellular casts in the urine
8. Neurological disorder – seizures or psychosis
9. Blood disorder – anemia (low red blood cell count), leukopenia (low white blood cell count), lymphopenia (low level of specific white blood cells), or thrombocytopenia (low platelet count)
10. Immunologic disorder –anti-DNA or anti-Sm or positive antiphospholipid antibodies
11. Abnormal antinuclear antibody (ANA)

So you can see that there is much more hoops to go through before any diagnosing will take place.  Since you did not mention joint pain as a symptom, I would be almost certain your diagnosis is not lupus.  Almost everyone (if not everyone) who has lupus has joint pain.
1530171 tn?1448129593
Hi Kara, nice to see you back.

It kinda feels lonely here a times, lol!

You're so right about Lupus DX, however, from anecdotal evidence from
people I talk to (with Lupus dx or suspected), very few Rheumies follow through with all the recommended diagnostic criteria, so it gets ruled out or ruled in based on less diagnostic work (too complex, too much time consuming perhaps?).

Take care.
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