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Ataxia, Nerve Disease, Neuropathy, Brain Damage and Celiac Disease

This category contains summaries of research articles that deal with ataxia, nerve disease and brain damage and their association with celiac disease. Most of the articles are research summaries that include the original source of the summary.

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    Is Alzheimer disease connected to other immune-mediated disease? Photo: CC-- Hey Paul Studios

    Is there a genetic connection between immune-mediated diseases and Alzheimer disease?



    Photo: CC--Todd Huffman

    Vice President Dan Quayle famously stated: "what a waste it is to lose one's mind, or not to have a mind is being very wasteful, how true that is," when speaking to people involved in the United Negro College Fund (1). While it is entertaining to read and ponder, this statement evokes some ideas I have about senility, which is increasing, along with many other modern diseases, at a frightening speed. The prospect of losing my mind, my memory, my sense of connection with friends and loved-ones, and even my sense of identity and personal hygiene is a frightening spectre.



    Synapses. Photo: CC--RuffRootCreative.com

    Results of a new study show that patients with celiac disease and NCGS have similar neurological manifestations, and that these respond well to a gluten-free diet.



    A nurse administers a neurological test to a patient's arm. Photo: CC--PACAF

    For celiac patients with neurological symptoms, many questions remain. Among them, the significance of anti-neuronal antibodies.



    Can researchers improve treatment for immune-mediated cerebellar ataxias? Photo: CC--Marco Bellucci

    Despite the identification of an increasing number of immune-mediated cerebellar ataxias, there is no proposed standardized therapy. Can researchers change that?



    Photo: CC--Salford Institute

    People with celiac disease frequently report cognitive symptoms when they are exposed to gluten, and clinicians have documented cognitive deficits in some patients with newly diagnosed celiac disease.



    Kids at playground. Photo: CC: Eden, Janine and Jim

    Patients with type 1 diabetes who have celiac disease face in increased risk for retinopathy and nephropathy. A team of researchers recently set out to investigate whether celiac disease associated with type 1 diabetes increases the risk of microvascular complications.



    Image: CC--Margherita J. L. Lisoni

    Earlier research on celiac disease and neuropathy has been hampered by the use of inpatient data, low study power, and lack of information on neuropathic characteristics.



    Tel Aviv's Sourasky Medical Center. Photo: CC--SA 3.0

    It's well-known that many people with celiac disease experience neuropathy and other nerve disorders. Now, a team of Israeli researchers are cautiously proposing a link between gluten reactions and ALS.



    Photo: CC--SA 3.0

    Many people with celiac disease report suffering from impaired cognition or ‘brain fog,’ but no good study had been done until a research team took an in-depth look at the issue.



    Photo: Wikimedia Commons--Stan Zurek

    There have been a few reports tying cortical myoclonus with ataxia to celiac disease. Such reports also suggest that the former is unresponsive to a gluten-free diet.



    Image: Wikimedia Commons.

    Can a gluten-free diet lead to dramatic improvement of Parkinsonian symptoms in patients with celiac disease? In the January issue of the the Journal of Neurology, researchers Vincenzo Di Lazzaro, Fioravante Capone, Giovanni Cammarota, Daniela Di Giuda, and Federico Ranieri report on the case of a man who saw a dramatic improvement of Parkinsonian symptoms after gluten-free diet.



    Photo: CC--IntelFreePress

    Some recent books are suggesting that a gluten-free diet might actually protect you from brain diseases.



    Image: CC--jsmjr

    Many aspects of celiac disease simply have not been well studied, so they remain poorly understood. For example, researchers have not done enough study on people with celiac disease to understand if they show any readily available serological markers of neurological disease.



    Photo CC: RDECOM

    To follow up on reported associations between celiac disease and peripheral neuropathy, a research team recently conducted a study of peripheral neuropathic symptoms in celiac disease and inflammatory bowel disease.



    Having been diagnosed with celiac disease, I know from having to follow a strict gluten-free diet that monitoring one's diet and health can be inconvenient, time-consuming, and challenging. Similarly, keeping one's blood sugar level under control for diabetics can be tough, but studies are showing how important this is, as it has been shown to prevent diabetic neuropathy, that is, nerve damage peculiar to diabetics, and its devastating effects.


    New study on gluten sensitivity sensory ganglionopathy.
    A team of researchers recently found that gluten sensitivity can play a role in triggering a certain type of neurologic dysfunction, called sensory ganglionopathy, and that the condition may respond to a strict gluten-free diet.


    Restless Leg Syndrome and Celiac Disease (photo courtesy of Geraint Warlow)
    A team of researchers that recently set out to assess rates of restless leg syndrome (RLS) in adults with celiac disease found a 31% prevalence of RLS among subjects with celiac disease, which was much higher than the 4% prevalence in the control population.

    Celiac disease is a vastly growing epidemic. Those suffering from celiac  have varying levels of difficulty digesting wheat, rye and barley; as celiac  primarily affects the small bowel and is considered to be an autoimmune intestinal disorder. However, compounding  new evidence sited in the March 2010 edition of the The Lancet Neurology, suggests that celiac also affects the nervous system, indicating a wider systemic disorder than previously thought.

    A new study says that migraines and carpal tunnel syndrome may point to celiac disease. Moreover, 35% of people with celiac disease report a history of depression, personality changes, or psychosis. Others commonly suffer from neurological issues that are not improved with a gluten-free diet.

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