When she came to me, and this is typical of about half a dozen children
in the practice, she actually didnt have any other markers I was looking at as far
as showing that her immune system was activated, some of the things I would look for
normally as a virus. But she had one very important one. Her ANA was 1:640 before I even
met her. Somehow this was tested, and nobody did a thing.
The truth is, going through UCLA, and Ill date myself, to medical
school there, I would have thought by the time I graduated that "autoimmune
disorders" were things that happened commonly in adults. These were the early days at
UCLA of collagen vascular disease, rheumatoid diseases and lupus. The characteristic was
that these patients did not often have a physical diagnosis; they didnt have a set
disease. However, medicine said this was abnormal to have an elevated ANA, and these
adults were treated as having a disorder, as a disease. Why we cant give the
children the same benefit of the doubt is beyond me.