Celiac.com 11/21/2008 - Not much is known about what effects, if any, a gluten-free diet might have upon gastroesophageal reflux disease-related symptoms (GERD-rs) in people with celiac disease. A team of researchers recently set out to assess the recurrence of GERD-rs, in celiac patients with nonerosive reflux disease (NERD).

Out of a total of 105 adult patients with celiac disease, the team found 29 with celiac disease who presented with the NERD. Those 29 were enrolled in the study, and compared against a control group of thirty non-celiac patients with NERD.

After 8 weeks of PPI treatment the team found that 25 (86.2%) celiac patients saw GERD-rs resolve, compared to just 20 (66.7%) control subjects. The team used clinical means to assess recurrence of GERD-rs at 6, 12, 18, and 24-month intervals after initial proton-pump inhibitor (PPI) treatment were withdrawn for 8 weeks.

In the celiac disease group, just five patients (20%) had a recurrence of GERD-rs at 6 months, but none had recurrence at 12, 18, and 24 months, while the control group showed recurrence in six of 20 controls (30%) at 6 months, in another six (12/20, 60%) at 12 months, in another three (15/20, 75%) at 18 months, and in another two (17/20, 85%) at 24 months.

This is the first study to evaluate the effect of a gluten free diet in the nonerosive form of GERD in patients with celiac disease, via a clinical long-term follow-up, and the results suggest that a gluten free diet could be helpful reducing GERD symptoms and in preventing of their recurrence.

J Gastroenterol Hepatol.  2008;23(9):1368-1372.

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