Positive ANA

Hi, so my story..... A few years a ago I started having symptoms which started with.... White spots on my tongue with mild pain, severe hair loss, rash along my for head with crusting at times, scalp flare ups with bumps and burning feeling, rash across my nose and cheeks, joint, muscle pain, cold sensitivity and some others. So I finally decided to go to the doc where they did an extensive blood panel which showed a positive ANA. Well the doc told me I have Hashimotoes (autoimmune disease of thyroid). I have immediate family with SLE and other autoimmune disorders. So my question is could this be the beginning of lupus and just attacking my thyroid?? I thought a positive ANA meant lupus. I feel like doctors don't care to get to the issue. Not able to see a rheumatologist for a couple of years due to waiting list or derm. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. TIA!!!

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Hi Srculley,

A positive ANA does not necessarily indicate a diagnosis of lupus. ANA is also positive in a number of other autoimmune conditions and in around 5-10% of the rest of the population. To diagnose lupus a consultant would check for certain symptoms and do tests for more specific autoantibodies such as anti-dsDNA.

If you think that your symptoms could be caused by something more than Hashimoto's then you may wish to seek a second opinion from a rheumatologist.

If you would like more information about lupus and how it is diagnosed, you can request or download one of our free packs at lupusuk.org.uk/request-info...

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It's almost like specialists are loathe to diagnose lupus. Your story sounds a lot like mine. Hashimotos for 30 years now but in the last 2 years things have progressed rapidly with a rare location DVT, skin rash for 5 years, Raynauds late onset this year, positive ANA speckled and homogenous. Already diagnosed with APS and right now Specialist is thinking progression to SLE and possibly scleroderma. Sigh. A positive ANA does not always indicate SLE.

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