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UW Health SMPH
American Family Children's Hospital

UW Hospital and Clinics Lab Test Directory

Test Name: ANA Screen with Titer if Positive

Test Code(s): ANA / ANAT

CPT Code(s): 86038 - Screen; 86039 - titer (if appropriate)

Test Description: Test Component:

Fluorescent patterns with titers of anti-nuclear antibodies on all positive samples.

Methodology: Indirect Immunofluorescent Assay

Clinical Significance: Used to assist the clinician in supporting a diagnosis of connective tissue disease based upon appropriate history and physical examination findings.

Days Performed: Mon-Fri, dayshift.

Turnaround Time: Stat: Not available stat.
Routine: 2 working days.

Specimen Requirements

Specimen: Blood

Collection Container: Preferred: Red top
Also Acceptable: Red cap with yellow ring (SST)

Collection Volume: Preferred: 3 mL
Pediatrics: 1 mL

Sample Analyzed: Serum

Volume Required: Preferred: 1 mL
Pediatrics: 0.2 mL

Specimen Processing: Centrifuge and transfer cell-free serum to plastic vial.  Refrigerate.

Specimen Transport: Transport specimen to UWHC Core Laboratory (B4/220). Transport with coolant pack if coming from UWHC Satellite lab locations.

Unacceptable Criteria: Grossly hemolyzed and lipemic specimens are not recommended.  Body fluids, including CSF, are unacceptable.

Stability: Ambient: Not acceptable
Refrigerated: 7 days
Frozen: No limit at -20 C. Note: Avoid repeat freeze and thaw.


0 days and up:


Normal range ANA titer: ≤ 1:80


Pediatric reference intervals were adapted from the literature.   

Additional Information:

Anti-nuclear antibodies are immunoglobulins directed against cellular antigens. Each serum is titered at 1:40, 1:160 and 1:640. Patterns are reported as homogeneous, speckled, nucleolar, centromere, cytoplasmic and other rare patterns. Negative, 1:40 and 1:80 titers are insignificant levels. A titer of 1:160 is borderline and may be due to exposure to many medications, infections and environmental factors. A low titer ANA result can be seen in many diseases including chronic infections, liver disease and chronic pulmonary disease. Most clinically evident connective tissue diseases (SLE, MCTD, scleroderma, myositis) are associated with high titer (greater than 1:320) ANA results.

Anti-Centromere ANA, Anti-nuclear antibodies, FANA, IFA

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