Antibody Tests for Lupus
- Anti-SS-A (also called Ro).
- Anti-SS-B (also called La).
- Anti-dsDNA (antibodies to DNA).
- Anti-Smith (Sm).
These antibody tests are often positive in lupus and can provide support for a diagnosis if the clinical criteria are unclear or if the ANA test is negative but lupus is strongly suspected.
- Anti-SS-A (Ro) and anti-SS-B (La) antibodies are not specific for lupus and are found commonly in Sjögren's syndrome. However, these tests are useful in helping women with lupus who are considering pregnancy. If a woman who has these antibodies becomes pregnant, she may need more careful monitoring of the fetus, since these antibodies are associated with a higher risk of the baby being born with neonatal lupus syndrome or a heart defect called congenital heart block.1
- High titers of anti-dsDNA are usually seen only in people with lupus.
- A positive anti-dsDNA suggests a higher risk of developing lupus-related kidney disease.
- A positive anti-Sm test is a specific marker for lupus and may be associated with more severe cases.
Anti-dsDNA tests can be repeated at intervals to monitor how the disease is progressing.
|Author||Shannon Erstad, MBA/MPH|
|Editor||Kathleen M. Ariss, MS|
|Associate Editor||Denele Ivins|
|Associate Editor||Pat Truman, MATC|
|Associate Editor||Michele Cronen|
|Primary Medical Reviewer||Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine|
|Primary Medical Reviewer||Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine|
|Specialist Medical Reviewer||Stanford M. Shoor, MD - Rheumatology|
|Last Updated||May 13, 2008|
Last Updated: May 13, 2008