Here's a link to give you an idea of what's included in the test panel: http://www.truehealthlabs.com/systemic-autoimmune-reactivity-screen-cyrex-labs-array-5/
So, any thoughts or experiences that anyone would like to share regarding this test panel, or Cyrex in general?
1) expensive. 2) if you have a leaky gut, you may test positive for more things. 3) and, if it does turn out that you test positive for one of these autoimmune issues, what do you do? Yes, it might be "nice to know," but unless there are therapies that you can do to reduce it, it is almost worthless. (and, most autoimmune protocalls are "strict paleo" or steroids.)
There is no point in getting these tests run unless you are having symptoms of an autoimmune disease. If you are having symptoms, then they should dictate which specific antibodies are tested for. You should be aware that testing positive for antibodies associated with a disease like lupus, for example, does not equal a diagnosis. It does not even indicate that you will necessarily develop that disease in the future. There are a variety of factors that can result in the appearance of a positive antibody, including a family history of autoimmunity, that do not mean that you are "doomed" to develop that disease during your lifetime. The significance of positive results is not always known because, in general, the healthy population is not screened for all of these things.
My advice would be that IF you are currently experiencing symptoms that may be attributable to an autoimmune disease, you ought to get tested for ANA (anti-nuclear antibodies). You family doctor could order this test for you. A positive ANA indicates possible autoimmune activity. ANA can be positive at low titers in healthy people, and it can also be positive in those with chronic infections, cancer, severe burns, and a few other non-autoimmune health problems. However, at a high titer (usually at 1:320 or higher) it almost always indicates the presence of an autoimmune disease. At very high titers (around 1:640 and higher) it is highly indicative or a developing or full-blown connective tissue disease such as lupus, scleroderma, RA, or dermatomyositis (among others) although it can occasionally point towards other autoimmune conditions like celiac disease, MS, or autoimmune thyroid disease.
An ANA test on its own would be much less expensive and would be a good general marker of autoimmunity. If it is negative, then you would not have tested positive on any of the specific antibodies that this Cyrex Labs panel looks for anyway. If you DO test positive on the ANA, then you can go from there with a referral to a specialist (such as a rheumatologist if your symptoms point towards a connective tissue disease, a gastroenterologist if your symptoms focus on the GI tract, etc.) and more targeted testing.
Also, I note that though this panel appears to be extensive, it does not test for any of the systemic scleroderma antibodies (of which there are 9 known) or Sjogren's Syndrome, among others. It would still be possible to get this run and miss certain AI diseases.
I just had this done and I'm regretting it. All it really told me was that I could "potentially" have problems with my GI and Thyroid...which I'm already having right now anyway. Just seems like it was a waste of money to tell me something that is pretty obvious...if I don't treat my GI and Thyroid issues then there is a higher likelihood that I'll get Graves, Crohn's etc... But you leave anything untreated and it's only going to get worse. I wouldn't bother.
I think the point here is that the antibodies are detected at one point in time. Supposed the antibodies are caused by gluten (which it often is), a diet eliminating gluten will reduce the antibodies next time you take the test. I just tested myself and two of my kids, panel 1 through 5, and found that I had no antibodies. I have been gluten free for one year. I do have a gluten intolerance Panel 3. I tested two of my kids. They have even more gluten protein intolerances (and lots of cross reactivity) than me and three types antibodies floating around. I bet if I get my kids off gluten these antibodies will go away. Will have to test again to prove the theory, but this is at least the way it is supposed to work. Look up Dr Thomas Obrian's lectures. www.thedr.com which gives a pretty good overview of how this stuff works.
Hi my name is Leanne and I am a Certified Gluten Practitioner under Dr. Tom O'Brien. I suspect the difficulty many people have with this test is they are not working with anyone who knows how to manage the results. If you are developing positive autoantibodies there are definite underlying causes that need to be addressed and yes diet will only get you so far. I specialize in supporting clients faced with this and also organize testing.