Does anyone else have an okay Rheumatoid Arthritis factor but elevated ANA test results?

Very frustrated, so this will probably be word vomit

Finally got into my RA specialist today, only to find out my RA factor is fine but my Antinuclear Antibodies are elevated. So he's not convinced its RA. He ordered more bloodwork and I go back in 2 weeks.

What prompted my regular Dr to send me to a specialist? All the symptoms, aches, pains, flu like feeling, overly tired etc....

Just frustrated at this point. I KNOW there's something wrong.

Anyone else have an okay RA factor but elevated ANA test results?

Erin Compton
E
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16 ANSWER

If your ANA is elevated, he's probably looking at Lupus.

Tamra Couch
T

RA Zero negative maybe? He might look at other markers like CCP etc.. My first test came with a ANA 1:80, RF 25, No CCP but Thyroid antibodies came positive, so he diagnosed RA. Is a long way to diagnosis. We all have different results on blood work, there's not a standard for diagnosis. My advice to you is to begin changing your diet, in my case gluten is the worse for me.

Melly Mendez
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Oh! By the way, some people with fibromalgya show positive for ANA.

Melly Mendez 3 years

As soon as my regular Dr told me to see a specialist I've cleaned up my diet. No grains, sugar and very limited milk. This has helped!

Erin Compton 3 years

Melly Mendez that’s not true because fibromyalgia is NOT autoimmune. The only way you’d test a definite positive ANA is if you have something autoimmune.

Manda Mckay 3 years

Amanda Ferguson

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Melly Mendez 3 years

For what I read there's also healthy individuals with a positive ANA. I'm not an expert neither a health profecional. I'm just sharing what I have learn and still learning everyday. This group has been so helpful for me and many others specially when I was first diagnosed. At the end the only person that can accurately diagnose is a Rheumatologist.

Melly Mendez 3 years
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I tested positive Ana 1:160, elevated inflammation markers crp & sed rate & positive RNP. My rheumy diagnosed me as Seronegative RA of the hands. The RNP antibody is very specific to MCTD. I’m currently off all meds until my internal medicine team all sees & evaluates me before I’ll even consider any meds again. I want answers not guesstiments by the docs. I realize autoimmune diseases are diagnosed based on clinical assessments of many things. I’m not willing to take the drugs they’re trying to give me until they can give me a more definitive answer.

Manda Mckay
M

I'm curious to see what my bloodwork will show this time compared to February's testing.

Erin Compton 3 years

If you have a positive ANA that titer number shouldn’t ever change or the positive ANA. I started meds when I was first diagnosed almost two years ago & my inflammation markers went down to normal with meds for my crp, but not the sed rate, but it went down significantly. I was tested for many others the ones I listed are the only ones that came back positive or elevated. My husband & I started researching things & I believed I had lupus from the get & we read the DSDNA test is only positive for 30% of lupus patients. I’m that patient docs hate to deal with because I’m so involved in my treatment & I advocate for myself. They just want to throw meds at us. I want more definitive answers if you’re giving me meds for something that has the potential to cause more health issues the longer I’m on it. Sorry for the rant dear. I understand your frustration & confusion that goes into all of this & a diagnosis.

Manda Mckay 3 years

I was negative for RA and my ANA was normal but my rheumatologist said he still thinks i have RA and gave me plaquenil... I am not convinced that all of this isn’t related to my pituitary tumor!

Azure Drummond
A

Definitely have them do the CCP test

Deserie Sherwood
D

Yep! This and the Rheumatoid Factor needs to be done.

Sinead Whitley 3 years

My ANA and rF were both negative but I have biopsy proof of Crohn’s disease and imaging shows significant inflammation in hands and degeneration and inflammation in my hips. My Crp and Sed Rate are always at the high end of “normal” or one or two points above, but as I have learned, what is the “standard norm” isn’t always standard for my body. Also different labs tend to have different findings.

Christy Jackson
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I am seropositive with RA. ANA was negative. My mom has Lupus and was positive with her ANA at diagnosis as well as other markers.

Sinead Whitley
S

Positive ANA is a sign to look into Lupus but that is not the only marker they use.

Sinead Whitley 3 years

Doesn't negative RA have other markers? I guess I am confused on how negative RA is diagnosed?

Sinead Whitley
S

I get that as I have seropositve RA. How is seronegative diagnosed if the bloodwork comes back normal?

Sinead Whitley 3 years

My diagnosis is seronegative. I was diagnosed from family history, blood work & symptoms. I can’t imagine there are many diagnosed with something autoimmune if some of the tests don’t support an autoimmune disease.

Manda Mckay 3 years

UGH there are so many avenues for this disease. I would be so frustrated being given the run around. So many factors!

Sinead Whitley 3 years

Rheumatoid Factor is the only definitive one that I know of, but not all people with RA have it. Other blood tests (CRP and sed rate) show systemic inflammation, but aren’t specific to any one disease. It seems to me that if you have an autoimmune arthritis and not obvious specific markers, they go off symptoms and response to meds to decide exactly which one you have.

Lauren Zavala 3 years

I have seronegative, and all of my bloodwork is perfectly where it would be on a healthy person. I'm about to get married and will have new health insurance and a new doctor, so we'll see how that goes.

Shanan Light 3 years

I have serongative RA and was able to get meds and treatment based on symptoms.

The new VECTRA test does show I have moderate RA activity, which is honestly a bit vindicating. It looks at a whole bunch of factors, so honestly I don’t know which ones are elevated for me.

As others have said, your RA doc probably suspects that you have lupus, which presents very similarly. The additional tests are probably more lupus-specific and most rheumatologists see all of the autoimmune arthritis conditions, so if you do have lupus and you’ll probably be able to stick with the same doctor.

I’m sure it feels like you’re getting the runaround, but I don’t think you are. I know how frustrating it is to wait for answers. I hope this new round of tests brings you some!

Lauren Zavala
L

lauren , how accurate is the Vectra DA test? I’ve requested it from my rheumatologist & he neglected to put in the order for it.

Manda Mckay 3 years

Amanda Ferguson I’m not sure how accurate it is, honestly. They measure a bunch of factors and then spits out a score from 0-100. My doc ordered it before I started on Humira, I think because my blood work has always been normal and she wanted some concrete justification to use a biologic.

Lauren Zavala 3 years

I have taken 3 Vectra tests - all three different, last one showed low. Diagnosed with RA about 4 years ago - all different meds. NOW I find out I don't have RA but I do have psoriatic arthritis. Says they are all cousins - all related, Right NO doctor. I'm mad at all of them. Xrays reveal NO bone damage. I am stil confused. My blood work on RA reads negative also. I would like to put all my doctors in a bag, shake it up and throw them out on a table and yell - what the hell is wrong with me. Frustrated. So I am looking at other alterntives. I understand your frustration totally. Good luck to you and ask about other types of arthritis.

Carol Castro
C

Thank you!!! I hope you find answers too!

Erin Compton 3 years

Yes I’m negative but blood work and others were elevated so I’m being treated with plaquenil which has helped. It’s mostly in my hands .

Julie Stapleton
J

My daughter and I have always had a negative RA factor. Diagnosis was done through ultrasound and mri so they could see the joint deterioration.

Dafne Sellers
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I do.

Theresa Godwin
T

I had pos blood work RF CCrp. Nov 2017 neg year 3. Pos ANA but lowest ratio. Feet were hit hard Dec 2017 moved to other joints. I went off pain meds nov 1 I walk my dogs 2 or 3 mi. I walked 2 mi yesterday on concrete was in agony. I need to rent a wheel chair as I am going to Stanford. Still doing healthy diet just can’t believe I need a wheel chair I hope this is temporary. I am ok with no pain meds I accept the new norm and my tolerance was too high just hoping I can halt progression

Marianne Pineda
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Oh my last Rhummy said it was in my head and dismissed me as blood normal

Marianne Pineda
M

Just came back from my follow up. He says it's not RA or lupus.. But one of the tests they did showed I may have autoimmune hepatitis. For those that don't know, that's when your system is attacking your liver.

Erin Compton
E

erin, that is good news! I heard there's already a cure for autoimmune hepatitis and great treatments, Good luck !!!

Melly Mendez 3 years

Melly Mendez oh really? I haven't done any research yet. I'm waiting on my husband to call while he's on lunch break

Erin Compton 3 years