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Antibodies Against Citrullinated Peptides

A Role in the Diagnosis of Rheumatoid Arthritis


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Diagnostic Criteria for Rheumatoid Arthritis

Slide 5

September 2008

The American College of Rheumatology has established a set of Diagnostic Criteria for Rheumatoid Arthritis. These criteria focus heavily on clinical symptoms. The criteria include morning stiffness that lasts longer than 1 hour, and arthritis of 3 or more joints, particularly the hand joints, that is accompanied by inflammation and swelling.  

In particular, Symmetric arthritis is an important indicator of Rheumatoid Arthritis. The presence of nodules is also an indication of the disease as are radiographic changes that indicate the presence of erosions and boney decalcification.

The only laboratory test that is currently part of the criteria is Rheumatoid factor (RF). I have included anticyclic citrullinated peptide (anti-CCP) antibodies on the list on this slide, although it is not part of the official diagnostic criteria. It is possible that it may be included at some point in the future, although many clinicians are using it now as a replacement for Rheumatoid factor.

Diagnostic Criteria


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