More and more people with celiac disease present atypical symptoms that are clinically indistinguishable from other gastrointestinal disorders. A new study shows that upwards of 4% of people with generalized gastrointestinal complaints  show elevated celiac disease antibodies when screened.

A team of researchers recently set out to assess rates of celiac disease in patients with gastrointestinal symptoms, and to catalog the common manifestations of atypical expressions of celiac disease. The research team was made up of Mohammad Rostami Nejad, Kamran Rostami, Mohamad Amin Pourhoseingholi, Ehsan Nazemalhosseini Mojarad, Manijeh Habibi, Hossein Dabiri, and Mohammad Reza Zali.

The team designed and executed a cross sectional study that included 5,176 individuals chosen randomly from self-referred patients within a primary care setting in Tehran province from 2006-2007.

In all, 670 of the 5176, or 13% of patients self-referred to a general practitioner suffered from gastrointestinal complaints.  All 670 subjects with gastrointestinal symptoms underwent celiac blood tests, including total