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Is there an NHS-recognised test for NK cell function?

Discussion in 'Diagnostic Guidelines and Laboratory Testing' started by Sasha, May 23, 2014.

  1. Sasha

    Sasha Fine, thank you

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    Given the findings that PWME have problems with NK cell function, I'm wondering if there's a test available on the NHS or if this is one of those areas where researchers are using one set of tests and taking them seriously while the NHS in its clinics regard them as fringe or unreliable.

    My impression is that even the researchers, over the years, have had conflicting results and I have a vague memory of Dr Klimas saying that this was because until fairly recently, tests hadn't been reliable.
    golden and Ambrosia_angel like this.
  2. Sasha

    Sasha Fine, thank you

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    Bump...
  3. mermaid

    mermaid Senior Member

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    I looked this up quite recently by googling as I too wondered about it, but I could only see it mentioned in the UK in relation to fertility/miscarriage issues. It was on those kinds of forums where apparently it is thought to cause issues for some people in pregnancy, but I expect you found this too. There is a petition going on related to this.

    I think even then it's hard for people to get done on the NHS but I did find this link where it talks about the test...
    http://www.lwh.nhs.uk/Library/our_services/fertility/Fertility_leaflets/Natural_Killer_Leaflet.pdf

    Actually I have just done another google and found it listed on the tests of this hospital - you need to scroll down to NK - looks like it's done for leukaemia
    http://www.nhspathology.fph.nhs.uk/Core-Service/Test-Directory/Haematology/ReferralLabs.aspx

    But for those of us with ME/CFS in the UK? Well if it's not in the NICE guidelines - forget it.
    Sasha likes this.
  4. ukxmrv

    ukxmrv Senior Member

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    I've not had any of my private NK cell tests recognised or taken seriously by an NHS doctor or consultant. That includes an Infectious Diseases consultant, a Neurologist or a Immunologist. They have all regarded this as being experimental. Never had any comments about being unreliable but the feeling was that they could not read the tests or knew the labs that they were produced by (i.e. not in the UK) so dubious.
    Sasha likes this.
  5. ukxmrv

    ukxmrv Senior Member

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    Mermaid, thanks for posting that. I had some correspondence with my PCT (when it was Westminster) about 3 years ago and I specifically asked them about useful immune related tests. They told me categorically that none of the ones on my list (and it included NK testing) was done through any NHS lab that they had a contract with. I was assuming that was London wide. Maybe they didn't know about the Leukemia one that was in your list or it is new.

    The recurrent miscarriage groups also have difficultly with their own private NK tests being taken seriously by the NHS. Although there is research at Liverpool Women's other NHS clinics (like the one I was seen at) completely disagree with this and will not take it seriously (even with tests).
    Sasha likes this.
  6. Sasha

    Sasha Fine, thank you

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    Interesting - sounds partly like a breakdown between research and clinical practice, even in these areas.
    ukxmrv likes this.
  7. ukxmrv

    ukxmrv Senior Member

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    It was more than a breakdown - it felt like knives drawn.
    Sasha likes this.

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