What does positive anti-DNA mean?

Question

I have recently been told I have SLE, I was to be tested every 2 months, but last month my blood test came back with anti-dna of 805, and was told I need to test once a month instead. I was placed on Hydroxchlor, Amitriptylin, and Gabapentin. Just got this month’s results, was told all came back fine except for the anti-dna is now 938. Was told to keep taking medications and keep appointment end of this month. What does an anti-dna of 938 indicate? why is it going higher in instead of lower?

Answer

In some patients, a positive anti-DNA test can indicate more active inflammation and thus your doctor may wish to monitor you more closely for new signs and symptoms.

Alan Matsumoto, M.D.

About Alan Matsumoto, M.D.

Part-time Faculty, Division of Rheumatology
Johns Hopkins University