What is the role of acute-phase reactants in the diagnosis of giant cell arteritis (GCA) (temporal arteritis)?

Updated: Sep 03, 2020
  • Author: Mythili Seetharaman, MD; Chief Editor: Herbert S Diamond, MD  more...
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Answer

Alpha-2 globulin, fibrinogen, and other acute-phase reactants are elevated mildly but nonspecifically in 72% of patients with GCA. A study of 26 markers related to immune cells identified serum B-cell activating factor (BAFF) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) as having the strongest association with GCA; elevated levels of BAFF and IL-6 accurately distinguished patients with newly diagnosed GCA from healthy controls. [87] However, currently these tests are not readily available in most laboratories.


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