The diagnosis of autoimmune rheumatic disease (ARDs) remains a significant challenge for healthcare providers, particularly primary care clinicians, where the patient often first presents with problems to be evaluated. As signs and symptoms of ARDs often overlap, or even exist as non-rheumatic disease, laboratory testing can prove very useful in helping clinicians to differentiate a diagnosis and classify disease. The immunofluorescence antinuclear antibody assay (ANA-IFA) is the gold standard for ANA testing, yet clinicians lack sufficient knowledge as to how to correctly use it in conjunction with a thorough history and physical exam. This program will discuss evidence-based clinical strategies to effectively screen patients who present with signs and symptoms suggestive of an autoimmune rheumatic disease, including the appropriate use and interpretation of ANA-IFA tests. 

Learning Objectives

  • Better understand and appropriately order immunofluorescence ANA (ANA-IFA) tests as a first-line screen for autoimmune diseases based on clinical presentations, so as to optimize testing and treatment for rheumatologic and other autoimmune diseases, as recommended by the American College of Rheumatology 
  • Interpret the results of an ANA IFA, so as to appropriately order sub-serology tests in ANA-positive patients to help narrow a differential diagnosis 
  • Refer patients with a positive ANA IFA and associated clinical markers to rheumatology or other specialties for additional evaluation  

Faculty Disclosures

Robert A. Baldor, MD, FAAFP

No financial relationships to disclose. 

Joseph W. Gravel, Jr, MD, FAAFP

No financial relationships to disclose. 


Non-faculty contributors and others involved in the planning, development, and editing/review of the content have no relevant financial relationships to disclose.

CME Information


AMA PRA Category 1 Credits

Accreditation Statement

pmiCME is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Designation Statement

pmiCME designates this enduring material for a maximum of 1.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.



Accreditation Statement

pmiCME is approved as a provider of nurse practitioner continuing education by the American Association of Nurse Practitioners. AANP Provider number 040308. This activity was planned in accordance with AANP Accreditation Standards and Policies.

Designation Statement

This program has been approved for 1.15 contact hours of continuing education. Which includes 0 hour of phamacology. This activity was planned in accordance with AANP Accreditation Standards and Policies. 

Instructions for Obtaining Credit

Once you have completed the activity, please click the "next" button to advance to the post-activity assessment. To complete this activity and claim credit, you must answer 2 out of the 3 questions correctly. If you are not successful after your first attempt, you will be given an opportunity to reflect upon the answer rationales and have the opportunity to review the educational content before proceeding. Once you have selected your answers, click the "submit" button to complete the evaluation questions and proceed to the claim credit screen.

Commercial Supporter

Quest Diagnostics

Education Partner


Fine Print

Internet Explorer (version 9.0 and above) is the minimum supported browser for Pri-Med Online eCME activities. Your Internet settings should be set to accept cookies and JavaScript. If cookies and/or JavaScript are disabled, the site may not function properly. A high-speed Internet connection (DSL, cable modem, or LAN-based) is not required; however, it is recommended for faster download times.

The opinions, ideas, and recommendations expressed in this educational activity are those of the faculty only and are not necessarily endorsed by, nor do they necessarily reflect, those of their affiliated institutions, pmiCME, pmiCME Advisory Boards and Consultants, DBC Pri-Med, LLC.

Clinical judgment must guide each clinician in weighing the possible risks, benefits, or contraindications of any diagnostics, interventions or treatments discussed. Clinicians should review manufacturers’ product information and consider these with the recommendations of other authorities when applying the assessment and/or clinical management strategies discussed in this activity to the care of their patients.

pmiCME educational activities are developed and conducted in accordance with the ACCME's Essential Areas and Policies. It is the mission of pmiCME to develop and present educational activities that are timely, fair-balanced, scientifically rigorous, and that serve to improve patient outcomes. To that end, we welcome your comments about how to better serve your needs.

pmiCME Accredited Provider
Pri-Med programs are owned and operated by DBC Pri-Med, LLC, a division of Diversified Communications, Inc. pmiCME, the accredited division of Pri-Med, is accredited with commendation by the ACCME and approved as a provider of continuing education by the AANP. pmiCME is the accredited provider for this activity.

Disclosures and Conflict of Interest
pmiCME requires all individuals in a position to influence educational content for pmiCME-certified CME activities to disclose relevant personal financial relationships with commercial interests prior to contributing to its educational activities. pmiCME assesses disclosed relationships and follows a defined process to resolve real or implied conflicts to ensure, to the best of its ability, that all educational content is free of commercial bias. Financial disclosures are listed in the activity syllabus and will also be printed on the slides and announced at the start of each presentation.

Discussion of Off-Label Uses and Investigational Products
During the course of their presentations, the faculty may mention uses of products that have not been approved in the United States for the indication(s) being discussed. All presenters are instructed to notify participants when they are discussing unapproved uses or investigational agents. In addition, specific slides will include notation of the off-label use or investigational agent being discussed. Views presented related to unapproved uses of products are solely those of the presenter(s) and are not endorsed by pmiCME or DBC Pri-Med, LLC.

Questions? If you have questions about this activity, please email support@pri-med.com or call (877) 477-4633.

Choosing Wisely: Indications and Interpretation of the Antinuclear Antibody Test in Primary Care

comments powered by Disqus