Having Postivie D-Dimer Tests


Q: I've had 3 positive D-Dimer tests since November, and had ct scans each time, each being negative for pulmonary embolism. But could that still mean one may be in the works? Im not pregnant, have had no recent tramas or surgeries, not been on bed rest or sitting for long periods of time. And throughout my body, such as calves, thighs, wrists, forearms, I've been having like stinging/pressure pains that come and go, and slight chest tightness. This has all gone on for little over a month. Any paths as to whats going on?

Symptoms:  Some slight chest pressure, some pressure/stinging pains throughout body such as calves, wrists, forearms, thighs, shoulder blade area

A:   Welcome to Ask The Doctor.
We are here to help you.
If there is no evidence of Deep Vein Thrombosis and Pulmonary Embolism found in your investigations and also if you don't have any active sepsis, pregnancy then you might be getting a false positive result.
This test has low sensitivity and specificity.
False positive readings can be due to various causes like liver disease, high rheumatoid factor, inflammation, malignancy, trauma, pregnancy, recent surgery as well as advanced age.
This test has to be correlated clinically and with other investigations. Isolated small rise in D-dimer has no significance.
In the absence of other findings, an elevated D-Dimer to the extent that yours is elevated is extremely nonspecific and likely does not represent pathology.
So, you should stop worrying about your D-dimer test.
I would advise you to get CT Angiography of Pulmonary vessels and Color Doppler of Leg veins if not performed yet.
I would advise you to get a thyroid profile, fasting blood sugar and serum ferritin done to rule out other causes of such symptoms. If no cause is found we would attribute this to anxiety.

Share my opinion with your doctor.
I hope it helps.
Stay Healthy.

Comments / Follow Ups

Patient: Thank you for the information, I now know what I can further discuss with my doctor. Is it weird for the results to fluctuate with the D-Dimer? In Nov. of '14, it was .92, in Jan of '15 it was .55, and this month, Feb, it was .95
Doctor: I suppose, that should be insignificant.
Good Luck..
Patient: Would a possibility of fibromyalgia or m.s. cause an elevated D-Dimer test?
Doctor: No possibility in case of Fibromyalgia.
In case of MS, it is not known to be elevated best to my knowledge.
Good luck.
Patient: Would my best bet is to see a rhuematologist? If I've been having the stining pressure pains in part of my calves and arms/wrists, with this elevated D Dimer test? I just feel like my parts of my body are weaker, like the limb areas. I just need to figure out what is going on. I appreciate all the help!!
Doctor: Hello, i would advise you to get a consultation by Internal Medicine Specialist. If he feels, you need a rheumatologist consultation, he will refer you.

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