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PBC Foundation
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How many of you have a positive AMA?

I had quite a few tests in Denmark and my AMA came back negative. I've never had a test for it in UK. The other tests I had was Anti Smooth Muscle and ANA which came back positive. I have overlap PBC/AIH but being treated for PBC only.

14 Replies

I too have AIH/PBC overlap syndrome and I am AMA negative and SMA positive (don't know about ANA). So good to find someone with the same condition. My AIH is leading my prognosis as my LFT's were really high. ALT-651 & AST-278. This indicates inflammation of the liver which has to be controlled. (Basicslly my consultant told me that if I did not take the AIH medication I could be dead in 3-4yrs due to my high LFTs). I am guessing that your levels are ok as you are not on any mediction for the AIH.

I would ask your doctor for your LFT results. I am on steroids (Budenofalk) and auto immune suppressants (Azathioprine) a now my levels are back down. ALT-27 & AST-18. I am also on Ursodeoxycholic Acid for the PBC.

Have you seen a specialist or just your own GP?

Btw I am in Scotland. Take care. X


Meant to say about 95% of PBC patients are ANA positive. We are very much in the minority. X


Sorry I was typing on my Iphone earlier and typed ANA positive instead of AMA positive.


I am positive for AMA and ANA.


Thanks for replying its great to know we are similar. I have been on Azathiorprine but taken off as I couldn't take it and my LFTs were much better without it. Its good to know about the ANA and SMA as there was no explanation why they were positive.

I also took prednisolone for a year.

I see my consultant every 12 months now. I go to the Royal Infirmary Edinburgh (We moved here in 2005). My next appointment is next month and then I will get my LFTs results. My ALP are always elevated about 129 - 280. My Igm is elevated as well.


Can you explain to me what "ANA" means. These have not been mentioned to me at any time and I have no idea what "ALP" is or what "lgm" relates to either. Should I be asking questions about these?

Also how long have you been in remission and off the Azathioprine for? Take it your LFT's are normal now? I attend the Royal Alexandria Hospital in Glasgow.


I am just AMA +


Hi Val02

Can I ask what you mean by "you are just AMA+" Does that mean you have not got PBC?

I'm curious because I only have the anti-body and not PBC!


Sorry it was a scant answer - I meant that is the only antibody I tested positive for. I do have PBC.


i was told by my consultant that having positive AMA and elevated lft levels is a diagnosis of PBC


ANA is anti nuclear antibody, usually positive in conditions like lupus or sclerodema ( i have scleroderma) there is often correlation between autoimmune conditions, so you can have several at the same time (not nice). IG is an immunoglobulin a protein secreted by the liver in response to an attack ie alcohol damage or hepatitis C. With PBC you would expect to have elevated IGM, with the other conditions i mentioned it would be eg IG and then another letter. (I have elevated IGM). ALP is a liver enzyme. Hope this helps!


I am AMA+ and ANA -


Thanks Inkedup you have explained it really well. The ALP stand for Alkaline Phosphatase i'm not sure what it explains about the liver, but is quite normal to be raised as well with pbc. The ALP is part of the LFTs blood tests. The consultant wanted to take my Img to show as a marker so they can compare it later on in the illness.

I guess everyone will have different levels according to their pbc.

I was on Azathioprine for only 3 months. My doctor referred me to Queen Margarets when I arrived here, but I wasn't happy with the consultant and so I asked to be referred to The Royal Infirmary. They took more blood tests and reassessed me.

I had my notes translated from Danish regarding my liver biopsy so they could read it. They were going to ask for my biopsy but I think Denmark would have charged the NHS for it. Im not Danish but my partner is. We lived there for a year but decided to come home after being diagnosed.

As far as my LFTs are concerned my consultant is happy with them even if some are a bit elevated.

I hope this helps


Hi everyone

I have positive AMA and positive IGM also but so far normal liver function test I have upper right quadrent pain dry eyes and dry mouth consultant says I'm symptomatic for Pbc but won't Prescribe urso until LFTS change which are being done every six months .also antibodies against thyroid but normal thyroid function also sicca syndrome ( possible sjogrens but negative blood tests and lip biopsy hope this helps x


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