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ANA / ENA Profile

ANA / ENA Profile

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Frequently asked questions

Your ANA test results are positive if antinuclear antibodies have been detected in your bloodstream. If your test result is negative, it means antinuclear antibodies were not detected in your bloodstream. A positive ANA test result doesn't mean you're suffering from an autoimmune condition. Some medicines can also cause them. Not everyone having an autoimmune condition will test positive. So, this test is just a part of the autoimmune disease diagnosis. Your healthcare provider will take into consideration your symptoms and do other tests to confirm the diagnosis.

Conditions that can lead to positive ANA/ENA test results include Juvenile chronic arthritis, Systemic lupus erythematosus, Scleroderma, Mixed connective tissue disease and autoimmune hepatitis. Positive ANA/ENA test results can also be due to polymyositis, a serious disease that leads to weakness of the muscles. The ANA/ENA test results can also be positive if you have one of the following conditions inflammatory bowel disease, viral infections, cancer, thyroid diseases, liver diseases or Raynaud's syndrome. You have more chances of getting a false positive if you have tuberculosis or mononucleosis or if you're 65 years or older woman.

The ANA test can't detect the exact cause of an autoimmune disease. It can only show that you have an autoimmune disease. It is important to contact your healthcare provider to understand the test results. If your ANA test is positive, you may need to get tested for ANAs specific to certain diseases. An ENA panel can help diagnose which autoimmune disorder you have. Your healthcare provider may order an anti-double-stranded DNA test to diagnose lupus. An anticentromere test can also be ordered to diagnose scleroderma.

An extractable nuclear antigen is used to detect the presence of autoantibodies in your bloodstream that react in the cell nucleus with proteins. These proteins are extractable because you can remove them from cell nuclei using saline and represent 6 main proteins(Ro,La,Sm,RNP,Scl-70 and Jo1). Certain autoimmune disorders are associated with the presence of anti-ENA antibodies, like lupus (SLE), mixed connective tissue disease (MCTD), Sjogren syndrome, and polymyositis.

Once you have developed ENA antibodies, they won't go away. Their levels may fluctuate where there is suspicion of autoimmune disorders, but they will remain in your body lifelong. The ENA test is ordered when you exhibit signs and symptoms of an autoimmune disorder, typically confirmed after having a positive ANA blood test. Most people donโ€™t need to get tested for them. But those who do can use this information to interpret the results effectively. This can also help your healthcare provider develop a treatment plan as per your symptoms and test results.

In cancer setting, autoantibodies have been classically considered to be epiphenomenon probably related to the release of tumour neo-antigen proteins, although the interpretation of positive serologic findings in this setting remains controversial.

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