Exams and Tests
Lupus can be hard to recognize, and it sometimes takes weeks
to years to diagnose. Lupus affects different people in different ways. And it
can take time for symptoms to develop.
Your doctor will record your medical history and do a physical
exam. He or she will check for certain
criteria to help diagnose lupus. These criteria include the butterfly rash and joint swelling.
Diagnosis and disease monitoring
If you have symptoms of lupus and you have a positive antinuclear antibody (ANA) test result, further testing may not be needed.
If your doctor feels that further testing is needed, you may have one or more of the following tests:
Checking for possible organ damage
As part of
ongoing treatment for lupus, you may have a:
- Urinalysis to
check for protein and cells, signs of possible kidney
- Kidney biopsy, if your doctor sees
signs of kidney inflammation. This test may help your doctor find the best
treatment for you. Only a small number of people with lupus need a kidney
To look for other possible causes of symptoms, imaging
tests are sometimes done, depending on which organ systems are involved.
Imaging tests include