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Hi, I have a question maybe you can help me with. I'm aware of the tests used to help diagnose Lyme's disease but can a person with Lyme disease also have a positive ANA screen? I am just beginning my journey as to why I've been experiencing these symptoms(which I know could also be something else). It's agonizing waiting for doctor's appointments and results. Need to see a rheumo. Wonder how long it'll take before I can be seen. If you know if Lyme disease could affect an ANA screen, please let me know. Thank you.
Hi southjerseymom, welcome to the board!

Yes, many people who have Lyme have a positive ANA. When Lyme disease is a possibility, the most important thing you can do is see a Lyme knowledgeable doctor. Many doctors do not understand Lyme and treat with outdated protocols. No test is completely reliable. A knowledgeable doctor knows this and will consider your entire history. Besides Lyme, ticks can transmit several co-infections including Babesiosis, Ehrlichiosis (HME & HGE), Bartonella, and Mycoplasma. Many people who have Lyme are co-infected. It is important to be tested by a Lyme reputable lab such as IgeneX in Palo Alto, CA.

Are you in NJ? I know of Lyme doctors who come highly recommended in Jackson, Baskin Ridge, and Egg Harbor. If you would like one of their names, let me know.

Hang in there okay? You will find out what is wrong.

I read somewhere why the ANA can come back positive in Lyme. I don't remember off the top of my head (uuggg - such SHORT memory), but will try to find the info for you. Sorry you're dealing with this.

How excellent that your FIL is an expert. WOW. What a blessing that must be.

Once your health is more under control and you're feeling better, perhaps you could discuss with us some of his (your FIL's) beliefs about Lyme. Would really like to know a doc's point of view. (E.g. why do so many docs not believe in chronic lyme; what is the best way to approach a doc who doesn't believe when you've run out of money and out of referrals; etc.)

Hang in there. We all know exactly what you mean about playing the waiting game. And, Honey, I'd use every "card" I had if I were you. Who want's to live like this?? Who wants to feel so horrible? Do what you can to get yourself well. Wish you the best.


As has been stated, many Lyme patients have a positive ANA and do not have Lupus. The reason for this was explained to me but I can't recall the specifics.

According to what I've read (UK source), a very high number of Lupus patients DO have a positive ANA, however the majority of those with a positive ANA do NOT have Lupus. Other conditions can also produce a positive ANA.

If you suspect Lyme your best bet is to see an LLMD. I have found the book "Everything You Need To Know About Lyme Disease and Other Tick Borne Diseases" by Karen Vanderhoof-Forschner. That really helped me a lot. Also, you might want to check and see if there is a Lyme disease association or support group in your area.
Hi SouthJerseyMom,

Welcome! I honestly don't know much about ANA except that it stands for Antinuclear Antibody Test and that is done by "adding a person's serum to commercial cells mounted on a microscope slide. If antinuclear antibodies are in the serum, they bind to the nuclei of cells on the slide. Next, a second antibody is added to the mixture. This antibody is "tagged" with a fluorescent dye so that it can be seen. The second antibody attaches to any antibodies and cells bound together and, because of the fluorescent "tag," the areas with antinuclear antibodies seem to glow, or fluoresce, when the slide is viewed under an ultraviolet microscope.

If fluorescent cells are seen, the test is positive. When positive, the serum is diluted, or titered, and the test done again. These steps are repeated until the serum is so dilute it no longer gives a positive result. The last dilution that shows fluorescence is the titer reported."

The above is what I read, not what I know. I would tend to think a Western Blot done by IgeneX would be helpful as that is where I tested Positive for 2 forms of Lyme.

I don't know if an ANA could tell one if they are coinfected like myself.

Anyway, I hope you feel better and please keep us posted,

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