Diagnosis Make an Appointment Refer a Patient Ask a Question Reviewed by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (April 01, 2009) A diagnosis of temporal arteritis is based largely on symptoms and a physical examination. The exam may reveal that the temporal artery is inflamed and tender to the touch, and that it has a reduced pulse. Your doctor may order a temporal artery biopsy. In this procedure, a small section of the artery is removed through an incision in the skin over the temple area and examined under a microscope. A biopsy that is positive for giant cell arteritis will show abnormal cells in the artery walls. Symptoms Treatment Clinical Trials For more than 100 years, National Jewish Health has been committed to finding new treatments and cures for diseases. Search our clinical trials.