New study looks at prevalence of CD in the Mediterranean Area. Photo: Jefferson Adams
Celiac.com 05/06/2011 - Recent epidemiological studies show that the prevalence of Celiac disease had been underestimated, affecting not only Europeans, but also populations of the Mediterranean countries, such as Middle East (1-4) and North Africa (5-7), where its prevalence is similar to that of Western countries.

A international team of researchers recently set out to estimate the global burden related to undiagnosed Celiac Disease in the Mediterranean Area, as computed by morbidity, mortality and crude health cost.

The team included Luigi Greco, Laura Timpone, Carmela Arcidiaco, Abkari Abdelhak, Attard Thomas, Barada Kassem, Bilbao Josè Ramon, Boudraa Ghazalia, Cullufi Paskal, Hugot Jean Pierre, Abu-Zekry Mona, Kuloglu Zarife, Roma Eleftheria, Shamir Raanan, Ter Terzic Selma, and Zrinjka Mišak.

Prevalence of celiac disease among low risk populations varies from 0.14% to 1.17% (15-17): 1%-1.3% in Turkey (18.19), 0.6%-0.96% in Iran (20-21), 0.5% in Egypt (22), 0.6% in Tunisia and Israel (23-24), <0.5% in Jordan, Lebanon, and Kuwait (1.10,16.25). Among high risk groups (patients with positive family history, insulin dependent diabetes mellitus, thyroiditis, etc.) the prevalence of celiac disease ranges from 2.4% to 44% assessed by serological markers and