It is best to leave the diagnosing to the Drs! That said, you can have Lupus even with a negative ANA. (97 percent of those with lupus will have a positive ANA test.) And certainly you want to discover what is causing the inflammation.
What kind of Dr are you seeing? It's helpful to list, succinctly, your symptoms on a piece of paper for the Dr to look at. Often when we talk about
them it isn't as clear as a list might be.
Here are the symptoms that lead to a Lupus diagnosis. These symptoms may come and go, and different symptoms may appear at different times during the course of the disease.
The most common symptoms of lupus, which are the same for females and males, are:
Extreme fatigue (tiredness)
Painful or swollen joints
Anemia (low numbers of red blood cells or hemoglobin, or low total blood volume)
Swelling (edema) in feet, legs, hands, and/or around eyes
Pain in chest on deep breathing (pleurisy)
Butterfly-shaped rash across cheeks and nose
Sun- or light-sensitivity (photosensitivity)
Abnormal blood clotting
Fingers turning white and/or blue when cold (Raynaud’s phenomenon)
Mouth or nose ulcersMany of these symptoms occur in other illnesses.
In fact, lupus is sometimes called "the great imitator" because its symptoms are often like the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, blood disorders, fibromyalgia, diabetes, thyroid problems, Lyme disease, and a number of heart, lung, muscle, and bone diseases.
Lynnwood, Lupus & Sjogren's Moderator, Dx: 2002DIAGNOSING LUPUS & HW's LUPUS 101
"Life is far too important to be taken seriously." - Oscar Wilde