[Histonet] slighty off-topic question for IHC workers

Jan Shivers shive003 <@t> umn.edu
Wed Sep 29 10:49:10 CDT 2004

My personal doctor has asked me to pose this question to others in my
professional field.  I have some interesting medical history I'd like to
share with you, and am asking for any comments you may have (and I apologize
ahead of time if you think this is an inappropriate forum in which to broach
this subject).

Four years ago, after a routine health check-up, my bloodwork came back with
a positive FANA test.  My general practitioner referred me to a
rheumatologist for follow-up, saying that I possibly had lupus
erythematosis.  The subsequent follow-up proved negative, since I had no
other signs nor symptoms of the disease, and no other abnormal bloodwork.

Then, one month ago, again a routine health check-up came up with abnormal
bloodwork results.  But this time, the FANA and other CBC values were
normal; however, the rheumatoid factor was now TEN times the normal level,
indicating I might have rheumatoid arthritis.  Again, after a trip to the
rheumatologist, the answer was the same... I did not have any other signs or
symptoms of RA.

So, the rheumatologist is stymied... and his curiosity was piqued when I
told him I've been working with antibodies and animal sera for 20 years (and
many of those times without gloves, tsk tsk).  He's wondering if there might
be some passive absorption of antibodies/animal proteins into my system and
my body is mounting a wacky response to them.  At least this is what I
gathered from his query.

Has anyone had similar experiences that I can relay to him as anecdotal

And before you all send those thousands of get-well cards, I'm in very fine
health otherwise!

Thanks for any input you may have.

Jan Shivers
U of MN Vet Diag Lab
St. Paul, MN, USA

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