How is vasculitis diagnosed?

The diagnosis of vasculitis is based on a person's medical history, current symptoms, complete physical examination, and the results of specialized laboratory tests. A doctor can test for blood abnormalities, which can occur when vasculitis is present. These abnormalities include:

  • Anemia (low red blood cell count)
  • A high white blood cell count
  • A high platelet count
  • Signs of kidney or liver problems

Blood tests also can identify immune complexes or antibodies (ways the body fights off what it thinks is a threat) that can be associated with vasculitis. Additional tests may include X-rays, tissue biopsies, blood vessel and heart scans.

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