J Tropical Pediatrics 2004, 50:37-40

Celiac.com 03/30/2004 – Researchers in India have discovered that serum prolactin levels in those with celiac disease are elevated in direct proportion to the severity of the disease. Dr. Gaurav Kapur and colleagues from the Lady Hardinge Medical College, New Delhi screened serum prolactin levels in 41 children who were diagnosed with celiac disease, 21 of which were on a gluten-free diet for more than a year. The results were compared to 41 healthy controls. The researchers found that serum prolactin levels were highly elevated in those with active celiac disease (average of 48.3 ng/mL), and present at lower levels in those on a gluten-free diet (average of 18.3 ng/mL). The healthy controls had an average level of 9.3 ng/mL. The longer the disease was left untreated along with the increase in severity of villous atrophy, the higher the levels of serum prolactin that were detected.

The researchers conclude that serum prolactin levels can be used to determine the severity of celiac disease in patients, and this option is more economically viable than the use of other options.

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