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Lupus blood test

One of the first lupus blood test is the ANA blood test that shows increased ANA is lupus patients. This Antinuclear antibody (ANA) blood test is not specifically for lupus. The DNA antibodies test is a blood test that is done to detect the presence of antibodies that characterize lupus. This test is conducted once the ANA blood test indicates positive ANA.

Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) is a chronic autoimmune disease that surfaces as inflammation and damage to various parts of the body and its tissues. Lupus can affect the joints, skin, heart, lungs, blood vessels, brain and kidneys. Systemic Lupus Erythematosus affects the blood vessels and connective tissues of the skin. Since the body turns against itself, the tissues become inflamed and swollen. Most often, SLE manifests itself with a butterfly-rash and pain in the joints. This disease is more pronounced among persons of Afro-Caribbean and Asian origin. Women are more likely to be afflicted by Systemic Lupus Erythematosus.


A patient suffering from Systemic Lupus Erythematosus experiences painful swelling in the joints, skin rashes, extreme fatigue, fever and infections due to weakened immune system. Scaly sores on the face (discoid rash) and butterfly-shaped rash on the bridge of the nose (malar rash) are also noticed. SLE also leads to serositis - inflammation in the linings of the hear, lungs and abdomen. There may be weight loss, vomiting and diarrhea. SLE can also cause swollen glands and sensitivity to cold. While symptoms of SLE are often noticed in the years of 15 - 45, it can even occur earlier or later.


This disease tends to appear in periodic flare-ups. Often diagnosis of systemic lupus erythematosus takes time. Blood tests are conducted for checking for the presence of antinuclear antibodies (ANA). Chest x-rays and urine analysis are done. Inflammation levels are checked with sedimentation rate (ESR) or C-reactive protein (CRP). While there is no cure for systemic lupus erythematosus, corticosteroids and anti-inflammatory drugs are prescribed to relieve pain and swelling. Immunosuppresants are also used in the treatment of SLE. Physiotherapy is used to give relief to the patient from pain in the joints.


Rheumatologist

Rheumatologist is a specialist who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of arthritis and diseases of the joint, bones, and muscles. Rheumatologists complete medical school, complete another three years training in internal medicine and thereafter complete another three years in rheumatology training.



Modern techniques in the field of rheumatology

Treatment for rheumatology has seen a drastic change for the past few years, modern techniques used in the field of rheumatology include

  • Using non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID).
  • Disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMAR) are also prescribed along with NSAID to treat severe conditions of rheumatology.
  • Early treatment helps in pain management and easy recovery from pain.

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Bibliography / Reference

Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: November 15, 2019