Monday, October 20, 2014

Monday, December 31, 2012 VickiG, Community Member, asks

Q: Diagnosed as seronegative RA for 15+ years, CYCLIC CITRULLINATED PEPTIDE AB IGG test

I have had pain diagnosed as seronegative RA for 15+ years, have taken methotrexate, Lyrica for fibromyalgia, and host of other NSAID drugs. Today my Dr. ran a CYCLIC CITRULLINATED PEPTIDE AB IGG test and results showed < 15 on a standard range of <20 being negative. So, I guess my question is with both of these RA lab tests not indicating RA, could I still in fact have Rheumatoid arthritis....and if not??

Any advice/help appreciated!

Answer This
Answers (2)
Lisa Emrich, Health Guide
1/11/13 12:02pm

Hi Vicki,


Lab tests are useful in helping to diagnose RA, but as you are aware, it is possible to be seronegative for Rheumatoid Factor and still be diagnosed with RA. 


The Anti-CCP, or Cyclic Citrullinated Peptide (CCP) Antibody, test is used to help make a diagnosis of RA.  It is often ordered at the same time as the RF test or as a follow-up test.  Just like RA patients are not required to have elevated RF levels to be diagnosed, they also do not have to have elevated Anti-CCP levels.


The diagnosis of RA is a clinical one, meaning that it is made based on clinical signs and not laboratory tests.  The tests help to show the presence of abnormalities, but abnormal results are not required for diagnosis.


What does your rheumatologist say about the test results?  For what reason were the tests ordered?  Definitely share your questions and concerns with your doctor who is best able to help put things in perspective for your personal situation.




Lene Andersen, Health Guide
1/17/13 12:54pm

the anti-CCP test this new and far more accurate than Rheumatoid Factor in assisting in the diagnosis of RA. I went to former couple of years ago where I heard that when the anti-CCP is positive, 90% of cases have RA. However, when it is negative, it doesn't necessarily preclude that you have RA.


Blood tests are not the end-all and be-all of diagnosis. Most rheumatologists (the good ones, anyway) are able to diagnose RA in absence of blood tests, based on medical history and an examination. If your symptoms are consistent with RA and RA medication helps reduce your symptoms, then you probably have RA (if it looks, walks and quacks like a duck, it's likely not a butterfly). What does your doctor say?

Answer This

We hope you find this general health information helpful. Please note however, that this Q&A is meant to support not replace the professional medical advice you receive from your doctor. No information in the Answers above is intended to diagnose or treat any condition. The views expressed in the Answers above belong to the individuals who posted them and do not necessarily reflect the views of Remedy Health Media. Remedy Health Media does not review or edit content posted by our community members, but reserves the right to remove any material it deems inappropriate.

By VickiG, Community Member— Last Modified: 01/17/13, First Published: 12/31/12