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Old 03-08-2011, 05:51 AM   #5
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Re: Just finished breastfeeding and have elevated ANA

jrlaguna, hi. Doubtless I'll have trouble finding words to convey this, but criteria and symptoms are different. The criteria speak to things that distinguish lupus from other conditions, and thus don't really constitute a definitive list of symptoms. To illustrate---

The criteria *appear* to say that only a few autoantibodies are possible in lupus (i.e., anti-ds-DNA and anti-Sm), but that's not really so. Other autoantibodies are possible but don't "make" the list, because those others are seen in both lupus AND other conditions. (To illustrate, I tested positive for anti-Ro, which is seen in Sjogren's syndrome, lupus, and certain complement deficiencies. For me, skin biopsy narrowed the Dx to lupus.)

The symptoms "sticky" also illustrates this concept: many symptoms are non-specific and don't point to any one condition. For example, thyroid problems can create many of the same early symptoms; so can vitamin deficiencies, anemia, etc. (My thyroid levels were OK; Vitamin D, B-2 & Folate were low.)

For the record, my doctors also told me (as your other poster writes) that lupus & other autoimmunes "love" shifting hormones. But I believe various other conditions do, too. (For example, I know women who had gestational diabetes, then later in life developed diabetes; or later developed Hashimoto's thyroiditis.)

CLEAR AS MUD, huh? Anyway, I hope your wife's remaining tests clarify what is/isn't going on. BUT if her tests don't reveal anything but her symptoms persist, I hope you take what you've learned and try again. (By that I mean by revisiting lupus & its close cousins, thyroid, etc.---meaning whatever conditions might still apply, per future symptoms & labs.) Sending warm wishes to you all, sincerely, Vee