It is often difficult to diagnose Sjögren's. In fact, it may take years before a definite diagnosis is made. A specialist in autoimmune diseases (known as a rheumatologist) is usually required to establish the diagnosis.
The diagnosis of Sjögren's is made based on the careful analysis of many factors. A thorough history and physical examination are essential. Also, there are certain laboratory studies that can be helpful when considering the diagnosis. It is important to note that a diagnosis cannot be made based on any specific blood test alone.
It is often necessary to measure the amount of tear production (Schirmer's test) and/or perform a biopsy of a minor salivary gland to confirm the diagnosis of Sjögren's syndrome.