Posted 24 June 2007 - 01:20 PM
Posted 25 June 2007 - 09:19 AM
Great question. Here is a link to the antibodies that can help make a diagnosis. Spend some time on this link and you'll be better prepared for Friday's appt.
Posted 25 June 2007 - 10:26 AM
Sweet provided a great link to our antibodies page. The first link "auto-antibody patterns" provides the information on which antibodies are specific to scleroderma. However, let me stress that a blood test does not prove that you do or do not have scleroderma. If it comes up positive, then yes - there is a high likelihood that you do. So the rheumatologist will take those results, your symptoms and other test results to make the diagnosis. I have a negative scl-70, but I definitely have systemic scleroderma. due to my symptoms and other tests results. So the bloodtests are great indicators, but do not necessarily "diagnose".
ISN Support Specialist
(Retired) ISN Assistant Webmaster
(Retired) ISN News Director
(Retired) ISN Technical Writer for Training Manuals
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)
Posted 25 June 2007 - 06:32 PM
I would also suggest a full auto antibody lab. This covers all of the autoimmune illnesses that could be affecting you at this point. Some autoimmune illneses can overlap and they can also identify what subset of disease you are dealing with and what organ it could effect.
Like Janey and Sweet suggested, even if your labs are positive your doctor has to weigh those with your current symptoms. Unlike Janey, my Scl-70 is positive, however I have no skin involvment so that leaves me with a diagnosis of MCTD. So you really have to have a trusting relationship with your rheumatologist to come up with a correct diagnosis in order to treat you properly.