The patterns by which antinuclear antibodies stain may give a good diagnostic clue in rheumatological diseases.
This clue is loved by USMLE question writers and it's very important to know the diagnostic significance of each pattern.
Here's a quick review:
- Rim (Peripheral) Pattern: is very specific for SLE
- Homogenous Pattern: is also specific for SLE and can be further tested with Anti-dsDNA, Anti-ssDNA, and Anti-Smith.
- Speckled Pattern: is the most common pattern but it's the least specific is it can be seen SLE, Scleroderma, Sjogren's, Mixed Connective Tissue disease, and also in normal people.
- Diffuse Pattern: is also non specific
- Centromere Pattern: is specific for CREST
- Nucleolar Pattern: is specific for scleroderma and systemic sclerosis
Some other useful threads
p-ANCA c-ANCA causes
Positive Autoimmune Antibodies and Causes