Islet Cell Antibody
(ICA)

Autoimmune diseases cause the body to attack itself, which leads to inflammation and results in damage to muscles, tissues, and organs. The inflammation produces antibodies in the blood that can be measured and the levels used to diagnose specific autoimmune diseases. Type I diabetes mellitus (DM) is an autoimmune disease, where the body attacks the pancreatic cells that produce insulin (islet cells). High ICA levels can be measured a number of years before clinical signs of diabetes are seen, and this test is a very helpful tool your doctor may use to prevent the disease or to better manage the onset, as well as to provide a proper diet and treatment. ICA testing must be done before any insulin therapy is started, since this will cause elevations in this antibody in the blood.ICA tests are ordered to diagnose Type I diabetes mellitus (DM), insulin allergy, insulin resistance; or to monitor your condition after a pancreas transplant.

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