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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

      This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.   Subscribe to FREE Celiac.com email alerts What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease? - list blood tests, endo with biopsy, genetic test and enterolab (not diagnostic) Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful? The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients) Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients) Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes Where can I buy gluten-free stuff? Support this site by shopping at The Celiac.com Store.

Ana Tests
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21 posts in this topic

Does anyone know if there is a connection with positive ANA tests and Celiac Disease?

Have any of you diagnosed Celiacs had a positive ANA, or vice versa. Have any of you had a negative ANA test?

I just want to see if there is any correlation....... ;)

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I believe there is a connection. I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease in 2002 and about a year later my doc called after my routine physical and told me my ANA was elevated. She told me it was a "marker" for LUPUS, which is like the MOTHER of all autoimmune disorders.

She sent me to a rheumatologist, who sent me for about a million blood tests (all negative, 'cept for that mildly elevated ANA) and I've been back to see him twice since. Once a year he runs the million blood tests and he goes thru my entire body systems asking tons of questions.

I've not had one symptom of LUPUS other than that raised ANA... but he brings me back once a year to keep an eye on me.

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I believe there is a connection. I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease in 2002 and about a year later my doc called after my routine physical and told me my ANA was elevated. She told me it was a "marker" for LUPUS, which is like the MOTHER of all autoimmune disorders.

She sent me to a rheumatologist, who sent me for about a million blood tests (all negative, 'cept for that mildly elevated ANA) and I've been back to see him twice since. Once a year he runs the million blood tests and he goes thru my entire body systems asking tons of questions.

I've not had one symptom of LUPUS other than that raised ANA... but he brings me back once a year to keep an eye on me.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Thanks! That's what I'm thinking too. I had a positive ANA test and I am getting blood tests for Celiac this Wednesday. I really am thinking that Celiac is what I have because all of the other blood tests came back normal (for lupus, thyroid problems, etc.) I was never tested for celiac before....

May I ask what your symptoms were and how your doctor knew to test you for Celiac? And did you get an ANA test before you were tested for Celiac too?

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My symptoms were unrelenting diarrhea and belly noises that sounded like wolverines were fighting in there!! I had no pains or other sickness. I thought I'd picked up some sort of parasite! The doc gave me a course of Flagyl, the med for "bugs" and did blood work and a colonoscopy. The results were SO positive, I didn't have an endo. I'd only had my symptoms for about 2 months when I was diagnosed.

About a year later, my routine blood work for my yearly physical showed the slightly elevated ANA. My doc sent me to the rheumatologist who did more extensive blood work. So far, so good... no symptoms from it.

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My symptoms were unrelenting diarrhea and belly noises that sounded like wolverines were fighting in there!! I had no pains or other sickness. I thought I'd picked up some sort of parasite! The doc gave me a course of Flagyl, the med for "bugs" and did blood work and a colonoscopy. The results were SO positive, I didn't have an endo. I'd only had my symptoms for about 2 months when I was diagnosed.

About a year later, my routine blood work for my yearly physical showed the slightly elevated ANA. My doc sent me to the rheumatologist who did more extensive blood work. So far, so good... no symptoms from it.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

wow! YOU WERE LUCKY WITH THE WHOLE FINDING OUT AND TESTING PROCESS!!!!!!!

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I had more to say but I accidently clicked add reply!:

Anyway, you really were lucky with this whole thing. I'm 21 years old and I've been having weird things happen to me my whole life, and starting in high school, symptoms got worse every year!

But I was going to ask you; I just got my ANA results in the mail because my doc. finally sent them to me and I was looking at them and trying to understand. I think it says 209H U/ml and positive is anything higher than 120. So, I don't know much about this, but that is pretty high, am I right? And that should indicate something.......

Well, I'm waiting for my celiac blood tests and also the enterolab test results, but I'm just wondering because my doctor kind of ignored this ANA testing all together. ;)

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Yea, I was lucky to be diagnosed so quickly... altho now I laugh when I tell people about it and say, "the first symptoms is unexplained weight loss... um... I didn't get that one!"

When I went to the rheumatologist, he explained it all so well to me. He said that my body is like a country (I asked if that was some kind of sick FAT joke?? haha). My immune system is the army that defends my country. When I get sick, my army comes to the defense and helps me get well...

So... sometimes when there are no germs to fight...or even when there are... the army (immune system) gets restless and starts fighting amongst themselves (autoimmune disorder). It's the immune system fighting itself!

So, he said that this elevated ANA meant that my army was sort of poised to fight against itself if it got mad enough.

I don't remember what my ANA number was... but the numbers go up in a funny way... sort of exponentially or something... so a big number looks bad, but really isn't.

I'd call your doc and get a better explanation!

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WOw! Thanks for putting it that way! (the country and army!) -I like that! :P

You HAVE A REALLY REALLY GOOD DOCTOR! Not only did he/she diagnose you from the first little sign, but he actually expalins things to you?? :blink: And in such a cute and easy to understand way?! Even better! :lol:

Where do you live and what is your doctors name?! I live in NYC, any chance you are near? I have YET to find a doctor like that!

Anyway, my doctor pretty much kicked me out of her office and out of her "practice" when my results for lupus and thyroid problems came back negative. She said "10% of positive ANA tests don't mean anything at all and are in COMPLETELY HEALTHY people." :blink: uhhhhhhhh, I'M OBVIOUSLY NOT HEALTHY, I HAVE A GAZILLION SYMPTOMS, MY LIFE HAS DRASTICALLY CHANGED BECAUSE OF ALL OF THIS, SO I MUST NOT BE ONE OF THOSE 10%! :angry:

She told me to go to a GI if I think celiac, though "I don't have any symptoms that would imply celiac"-according to the genius rheum. :huh: (I have about 50 of the 200-I think that should be enough)-She told me to only call her "if things get worse." ;)

Anyway, sorry for the b*tching and complaining here :D , but the only good and on point info. I've ever gotten is through my own research and this forum. :(

Thanks for your input though!

-Danielle

P.S. HAPPY THANKSGIVING! :)

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I, too, had a positive ANA test, 1:320 the first time, then 1:160. Both are positive, one, obviously is higher than the other. I was sent to a rheumatologist who also tested me for everything, but didn't find anything. I do have some joint symptoms and had pleurisy pains for a few months, but they have subsided now. I still have some joint sensations. I was in earlier this month for a follow up and he decided to do an MRI of my hands, and there may be a spot on one of my joints in my right index finger - it could indicate some joint erosion. I don't find out until the first week of December when I go for the follow up to the MRI. We'll see.

Most doctors I talk to about positive ANA's say they are a real pain - they could mean about a million things.

Stephanie

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Well, the dopey doctor was right about one thing: ANA can be positive in perfectly healthy people. Of course, many of them are elderly people. But if you have an elevated ANA titre and symptoms suggestive of autoimmune disease, you should be followed up.

As far as I know, elevated ANA is not directly linked to celiac disease. However, many autoimmune diseases that are associated with celiac disease--lupus, Sjogren's among them--usually produce high ANA levels. I'm one of those weirdos who has a Sjogren Syndrome antibody (anti-Ro/SSA) with a negative ANA. Go figure. It happens, especially with anti-Ro.

Had my blood drawn last week for all the celiac disease-related autoantibodies plus Ig levels. So I'm in waiting mode right now. Don't know whether I want the results to be positive or not. It would certainly answer a lot of long-standing questions. Then again, I can't imagine myself on any kind of a strict diet.

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evil gut--

so have you been diagnosed with sjogren's yet? do you experience any symptoms? just curious...my NP thinks i should be tested. but i had an ANA last year and it was negative i believe....

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luvs2eat Posted Nov 14 2005, 10:21 AM

I believe there is a connection. I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease in 2002 and about a year later my doc called after my routine physical and told me my ANA was elevated. She told me it was a "marker" for LUPUS, which is like the MOTHER of all autoimmune disorders.

She sent me to a rheumatologist, who sent me for about a million blood tests (all negative, 'cept for that mildly elevated ANA) and I've been back to see him twice since. Once a year he runs the million blood tests and he goes thru my entire body systems asking tons of questions.

I've not had one symptom of LUPUS other than that raised ANA... but he brings me back once a year to keep an eye on me.

That is almost exactly what happened to me. When I was tested for celiac disease, I had a thyroid test and an ANA test. My ANA test came back slightly high and my thyroid came back HYPO. I was supposed to go back to see a rheumatologist- but never did because my gastro told me that my ANA levels could be high from my thyroid or celiac disease. He also said sometimes elevated ANA is because of just an infection like the flu. He basically told me not to waste my time- so i didn't. I have no symptoms of Lupus or anything, and I feel fine taking my thyroid meds and being gluten-free.

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evil gut--

so have you been diagnosed with sjogren's yet? do you experience any symptoms? just curious...my NP thinks i should be tested. but i had an ANA last year and it was negative i believe....

Hi jenvan,

I am officially diagnosed with "probable" Sjogren's--only because I haven't had a salivary gland biopsy (no thanks!) or another objective test like the Schirmer's. Since I have symptoms of dry eyes and mouth and the anti-Ro/SSA antibody, I get a probable diagnosis even without the tests. That's enough for me. I know I have it. OTOH, I don't have celiac disease, which is why you haven't seen me on this board for a while. I had the antibody tests, and all were negative. I'm still anemic and no one knows why--colonoscopy and upper endoscopy were normal, so bleeding from the GI tract isn't the cause.

On the subject of Sjogren's again, I am also ANA negative--or was five years ago. I haven't been tested since. ANA can change. I could have it done tomorrow and test positive. Although it's not common, you can have Sjogren's without a positive ANA.

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evil gut--

thanks for the info. hope you start improving. that's weird all your gi tests etc came back normal. did they ck your liver and kidneys, do you have heavy periods? good luck to you and figuring it all out!!

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wow! YOU WERE LUCKY WITH THE WHOLE FINDING OUT AND TESTING PROCESS!!!!!!!

I found you! ~Love your Step Mom!

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I found you! ~Love your Step Mom!

I'm just sitting here, eating my rice cakes, reading posts and I'm like, whoa, this is an old post.....ANA?! hahahahaha, I was so surprised to see it was you replying to me! haha, I've been looking for your posts even though I didn't know your name! haha.......but both of ours are pretty obvious!

lol....too funny

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;) Hi,

My name is Christy, I have not been officially diagnosed with Celiac's as of yet, but am currently going through all of the tests. I was reading through this discussion about a Positive ANA test and having Celiacs and I totally agree that they are related. It has been suspected for quite some time that I have Celiacs and just recently my tests came back slightly B12 deficient as well as a slightly positive ANA test. Nothing else came back positive except for those two. Everything I have been researching points to those two being related, as well as the B12. My symptoms have been cronic diarreha, upset stomach and severe fatigue. I have heard that the one main symptom is weight loss, but that is definatly not my case, I have had the opposite problem, unexplained weight gain?? Is this common??

I will keep everyone informed of my results

Christy :blink:

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The ANA blood tests are not specific to Celiac and are not usually performed when testing for Celiac anymore. There are many other conditions that can elevate ANA tests. Have your doc run a tTG, EMA, and total IgA. This will narrow down the cause of your problems and hopefully give you a more definitive answer. Even if those are all negative, you could still try the diet and see how you feel. Good luck. Also, sometimes full blown Celiac doesn't show up until the villi are totally flat. Bummer, I know. :(

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The ANA blood tests are not specific to Celiac and are not usually performed when testing for Celiac anymore. There are many other conditions that can elevate ANA tests. Have your doc run a tTG, EMA, and total IgA. This will narrow down the cause of your problems and hopefully give you a more definitive answer. Even if those are all negative, you could still try the diet and see how you feel. Good luck. Also, sometimes full blown Celiac doesn't show up until the villi are totally flat. Bummer, I know. :(

Disregard my last post. I think I'm having brain fog. I thought you were talking about AGA, the Anti-gliadin panels. So sorry. I don't know anything about ANA. I apologize again.

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I'm just sitting here, eating my rice cakes, reading posts and I'm like, whoa, this is an old post.....ANA?! hahahahaha, I was so surprised to see it was you replying to me! haha, I've been looking for your posts even though I didn't know your name! haha.......but both of ours are pretty obvious!

lol....too funny

I see you originally posted back in November. Did you have the biopsy done by Dr. Green. Was that "THE" Dr. Green at Columbia University. Love to know how your story played out.

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Yes, I'd love to know too

I've had elevated ANA and Dr's said don't worry about it..both the internist and rheumatologist.

that was before the celiac disease :blink: dx. HUMMMMM????

Seems we always putting the pieces of this puzzle together aren't we.?

Judy

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