Anti Ssa (Ro) Antibody

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    blood sample




    Age group

    Above 10 years

    Anti-SSA (Ro) antibodies are autoantibodies produced by the immune system that target the SSA protein (also known as Ro antigen), which is found in various cells in the body. The anti-SSA (Ro) antibody test is a blood test that measures the levels of these antibodies in the blood.

    Anti-SSA (Ro) antibodies are often associated with autoimmune conditions such as systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), Sjogren's syndrome, and neonatal lupus. In Sjogren's syndrome, for example, anti-SSA (Ro) antibodies are present in about 60-70% of patients. In Sjogren's syndrome, the immune system starts attacking healthy cells instead of harmful substances. Moreover, the white blood cells (WBCs) also start attacking the moisture-producing glands.

    As a result, the body is unable to produce tears, saliva, etc. The following symptoms characterise the onset of the disease:

    • Dryness in the nose
    • Dry skin, lips, or throat 
    • Fatigue 
    • Frequent skin rashes and increased UV light sensitivity 
    • Shortness of breath 
    • Dry cough 
    • Swollen neck and face glands 
    • Dry eyes (itching, burning)
    • Cottonmouth or chalky feeling in the mouth
    • Heartburn
    • Constant headaches 
    • Difficulty focusing on or remembering things 
    • Numbness in certain parts of the body 
    • Abnormal taste 
    • Blurry vision
    • Tooth decay and other dental issues

    There are two primary kinds of SS. They are as follows:

    • Primary Sjogren's syndrome: This condition develops by itself and isn’t a result of some other condition. 
    • Secondary Sjogren's syndrome: This condition develops on top of other autoimmune diseases such as psoriatic arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, etc.

    But what causes SS? Well, the exact cause of the immune system trigger is unknown. However, there are certain possible causes of SS:

    • Genetics 
    • Viral infections
    • Environmental factors 
    • Sex hormones

    For instance, let’s consider you have an SS-linked gene in your DNA. Now, when you contract an infection, your immune system will jump into action. However, due to the mutated gene, your WBCs will attack your healthy cells instead.

    On top of possible causes, researchers have also found potential risk factors for the condition. Here are some risk factors that can increase your chances of contracting the autoimmune condition:

    • Gender: Women have a 10x higher chance of contracting the condition than men. 
    • Age: The condition generally affects adults above the age of 40. However, it can also affect children and young adults. 
    • Other autoimmune diseases: More than 50% of Sjogren ’s syndrome patients also have other autoimmune diseases (rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, etc.)

    The anti-SSA (Ro) antibody test is usually performed as part of a panel of tests to help diagnose autoimmune disorders. A positive result for the anti-SSA (Ro) antibody test may indicate the presence of an autoimmune disorder, but the test alone cannot be used to make a definitive diagnosis. Other tests and clinical evaluations are typically needed to confirm a diagnosis.

    It's important to note that having a positive anti-SSA (Ro) antibody test does not necessarily mean that a person has an autoimmune disorder or will develop one. Further evaluation by a healthcare professional is required to determine the significance of a positive test result. 

    faqFrequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    Frequently asked questions

    No, there are no such complications or risks associated with the above test. The test uses a blood sample, which is extracted from your arm vein with the help of a needle. Hence, you might experience some light bruising or scarring at the point of contact with the needle.
    The above autoimmune condition will affect the following parts of your body: Blood Heart Kidney Nerves Joints Skin Muscles
    If you have the above condition, stay away from any medication that can cause dry eyes. These include: Certain antidepressants  Diuretics  Antihistamines Consult your healthcare practitioner if you absolutely need to consume these medications. There might be a chance that the benefits might outweigh the risks.
    Here is a list of food items to stay away from if you have the above condition: Crunchy food items like raw vegetables Sticky food items like jams, peanut butter, etc. Tough food items like bread, meat, etc.
    Yes, the above condition can affect your brain. Some symptoms of the above condition include: Confusion Flu-like symptoms  Meningeal  signs On top of this, you might also experience focal neurological symptoms like cerebellum symptoms, cranial nerve palsy, seizures, etc.
    Yes, the above condition can pave the way for heart issues. In fact, you will be exposed to a higher cardiovascular risk of rheumatologic diseases. Furthermore, SS patients experience a higher risk of stroke and heart attack compared to the general population.

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    The information mentioned above is meant for educational purposes only and should not be taken as a substitute to your Physician’s advice. It is highly recommended that the customer consults with a qualified healthcare professional to interpret test results