Laboratory

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CAA has an on-site laboratory capable of processing routine studies for general medical care. We also offer specialized autoantibody testing needed to follow patients with rheumatologic diseases.

If only a portion of the lab results are performed in our office, we will draw the blood tests in our office and send them to the appropriate commercial laboratory.

When paired with physical examinations, blood tests are an effective way to confirm and diagnose potential disease activity. Our on-site laboratory helps determine results, which are classified as positive or negative. If a rheumatic disease is diagnosed due to positive test results, further laboratory testing can show our physicians the extent of the disease and guide their treatment process.

Antinuclear Antibody Testing

Antibodies are proteins that develop in the body’s immune system to combat infectious germs. Sometimes antibodies make the mistake of identifying normal proteins in the body as “foreign,” which causes the body to attack itself. These antibodies are identified as autoantibodies, and they incorrectly work to target “normal” proteins within the nucleus of a cell. They’re also known as antinuclear antibodies, and most people have them in small amounts within the body. When there’s a large presence found, it can indicate existing autoimmune diseases, including Sjogren’s Syndrome, lupus, scleroderma, connective tissue diseases, and cases of juvenile arthritis.

Sometimes patients get a “false positive” ANA test result, which means an autoimmune disease does not actually exist in the body. Certain medications trigger false positive results, so it’s important to let your doctor know about any prescriptions you’re currently taking.

Testing Positive for an Autoimmune Disease

If you find out you’ve tested positive for an autoimmune disease, our doctors will work with you to determine the next steps. There are many available treatments to consider, so please talk to our physicians about any and all of your concerns.

May 4, 2018

9 Ways to Improve Life with Lupus

10 ways to improve your life with lupus

With symptoms like fever, fatigue, headaches and joint stiffness, having lupus can make everyday life a challenge. However, it doesn’t mean you have to hold back from living your best life. Learning how to manage the daily challenges that come with lupus is the key to creating a quality life. Here are nine ways to […]

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Apr 20, 2018

Reclaim: Five Foods to Help Manage Gout

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Gout is a form of arthritis that is caused by chronically elevated levels of uric acid in the diet.  The uric acid eventually forms crystals, which can be deposited in different joints. As those who suffer from gout know, severe attacks can be debilitating. Fortunately, this condition is very treatable with a doctor’s care and a […]

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Apr 9, 2018

Spring Cleaning Tips to Save Your Joints

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There is nothing that quite compares to a sparkling clean home, and there is no better time to get it sparkling than the spring. However, for those who suffer from joint pain, this can be a difficult task. Here are a few tips to make spring cleaning a little bit easier. Pace yourself. Do not […]

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