Antimitochondrial Antibody Test Positive, False Positive, Negative, Normal levels

Antimitochondrial antibodies, also known as AMA, are a type of autoantibody that has been found to have a significant correlation with primary biliary cholangitis (PBC), also known as primary biliary cirrhosis in the past. This test is used to identify and quantify the amount (titer) of AMA that is present in the blood.

The bile ducts within the liver become inflamed and scarred as a result of primary biliary cholangitis, a persistent autoimmune illness. It is a disease that worsens over time and slowly obstructs the bile ducts while also destroying the liver. Blocked bile ducts can cause a buildup of toxic compounds in the liver, which may eventually result in irreversible scarring (cirrhosis). The peak incidence of PBC occurs in middle-aged women, specifically those between the ages of 35 and 60. Antimitochondrial antibodies will be present in considerable concentrations in 90–95% of PBC patients.

Antimitochondrial Antibody Test Positive & Negative

The absence of AMA in normal test results indicates that the disease does not exist. A positive AMA indicates that measurable amounts of antibodies are present in the bloodstream. In spite of the fact that a positive AMA test is almost always connected to PBC, it is also possible for it to be positive in cases of autoimmune hepatitis, arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, and graft-versus-host disease. These antibodies are simply one manifestation of an autoimmune condition that is currently being developed by the body.

Antimitochondrial Antibody Test Positive, False Positive, Negative, Normal levels

If your results are positive, you will likely require more testing to confirm your diagnosis. For instance, a biopsy of the liver may be recommended by your doctor. A CT scan or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the liver may also be ordered by your doctor.

Antimitochondrial Antibody Test False Positive

When the immune system encounters a mitochondrial antigen, it produces an immunoglobulin known as an antimitochondrial antibody (AMA). AMA testing is used to identify additional autoimmune diseases as well as primary biliary cirrhosis, an autoimmune condition that damages the liver. When a person has a positive AMA test result but does not have primary biliary cirrhosis, this is referred to as a false positive result on the AMA test. Several circumstances, such as the existence of other autoimmune illnesses or drug or pathogen exposure, can lead to a false positive result. If the test is carried out improperly or its results are misconstrued, these problems may also arise. To confirm the diagnosis in the event of a false positive result, further testing should be conducted.

Antimitochondrial Antibody Normal Levels

To identify primary biliary cirrhosis, AMT is used (PBC). The presence of PBC is established in the patient if the level of anti-mitochondrial antibody, namely M2, is higher than the reference range for positive. If the outcome is negative, PBC is ruled out as a possibility.

Range of references

  • Negative <0.1 Units
  • Borderline 0.1 - 0.3 Units
  • Weak Positive 0.4 – 0.9 Units
  • Positive ≥1.0 Units

Antimitochondrial Antibody Types

AMA are autoantibodies produced in response to antigens within the body. While all nine AMA antigens (M1-M9) have the potential to be pathogenic, the two most dangerous are M2 and M9 (clinically significant). The M2 form of AMA has been very prevalent in PBC, but the other varieties may be present in other diseases. 

Antimitochondrial Antibody Test Positive, False Positive, Negative, Normal levels Antimitochondrial Antibody Test Positive, False Positive, Negative, Normal levels Reviewed by Simon Albert on January 10, 2023 Rating: 5
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