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Wall Street Journal Article Re Reflux
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Today's Wall Street Journal (Oct 10, 2005) has a featured article in the health section addressing heartburn, reflux, etc titiled:

The Hidden Dangers of Heartburn

How a common health problem is quietly becoming an unsuspected killer

By TARA PARKER-POPE

Staff Reporter of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

October 10, 2005; Page R1

Since the article is officially accessible only by paid subscription which I have, I would like to mention a few of its highlights. This is too good an example of a missed opportunity to save a few (maybe many) people from a health problem that often responses to the gluten-free diet.

The article mentions an estimated 100 million Americans suffer from heartburn. It goes to on to discuss the growing uneasiness in the med community about the dangers of heartburn. Heartburn's links to other diseases are mentioned; however there is no mention of gluten sensitivity being a link. The article discusses the potential dangers of taking medicines for the relief of heartburn. The article discusses some possible cures, including surgery, but again no mention of gluten.

Hopefully you all can get a sense of the magnitude of missed opportunity. Nary a mention of gluten!! If you are interested, take a look at the full article in today's paper - it was quite long. I emailed the Health Editor (Write to Tara Parker-Pope at healthjournal@wsj.com ) to politely point out that reflux is a fairly common symptom of gluten sensitivity easily corrected by the gluten-free diet. Maybe if enough other people read the article and emailed as well, it might help to raise her awareness of the dangers of gluten and of the gluten-free diet as a valid and useful cure. Just a thought...

George

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Excuse my playing devil's advocate here, but is heartburn really THAT closely connected to gluten that it would be mentioned in such an article? :ph34r:

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Excuse my playing devil's advocate here, but is heartburn really THAT closely connected to gluten that it would be mentioned in such an article? :ph34r:

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Try a search for "reflux" (which is synomous with heartburn in the WSJ article) in the Predx,Testing & Symptoms forum. I did and found about 147 hits, many of them reporting decreased reflux symptoms after going gluten-free.

Reflux is also frequently listed as a possible symptom for gluten sensitivity including celiac disease e.g. Dr Fine, Enterolab; DAVID A. NELSEN, JR., M.D., M.S., University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences; Braly & Hoggan in "Dangerous Grains".

George

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I agree with George.

The connection between most gastrointestinal diseases and gluten is not a secret known only to celiacs. It is commonly found in the literature - both medical and non-medical. Most doctos don't read either so it would help if writers, who have such an opportunity to educate, would do so. Claire

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Gotta 'third' that one...

I, too, was diagnosed 'with reflux,' but have none, zilch, ZERO now, 9 1/2 months after going gluten-free ...

One of my younger brothers also was diagnosed 'with reflux,' and is getting tested next month, after i told him it is one of the symptoms of celiac disease. Now, if I can only get my four other siblings to get tested for celiac disease...especially my older, very thin bro who is addicted to Tums (which, of course, contain gluten!)...

But, as my mother says, Gary doesn't like anyone to ask him about his health...guess he has some sad symptoms he hides away...

Maybe all of my MANY forwarded e-mails to my 2 sisters and 3 brothers about celiac disease and the plethora of symptoms, or even the absence of symptoms, and the 15% concordance rate in siblings of diagnosed Celiacs will help motivate him (and my 3 other sibs) to get tested, too!

Gina

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    • I figured I would update those who were wondering.  I have gotten the appt. so far moved up to August 30. I am waiting to have gene testing done via swab for all 3 of my kiddos tomorrow. My daughters celiac antibodies came up negative but her IgA is low which the ped said could cause false negative antibodies for celiac so she will need to see a GI dr. also. The pediatrician is going to call the GI to try to get them in sooner. I am keeping them all on a gluten diet until the GI dr. decides what to do. I am on the cancellation list already for my son, however I am not going to be persistent with my phone calls to them until I have the results of the gene test. I really want that result in my hand before going to the GI dr if I can. Maybe if he is positive, along with his bloodwork and my history they can forgo the endoscopy. But he will eat gluten till then.  My husband and I have been very honest and upfront with him as to what is going on and the possibility of the endoscopy and what that entails and although scared in general he seems ok after assuring him that since I have it he has me to help him every step of the way.  Going through his current diet with him I realized that he is truly on such a low gluten diet that I am actually surprised his bloodwork shows antibodies at all!  So I told him to make a list of allllll the gluten he could possibly think of eating and he needs to pound it until the GI visit or endoscopy. Funny thing is everything he keeps thinking of to want to eat...is already gluten free!  The other night we were at a friends and he asked if he could be done with his hotdog. I made him finish just the bread 😂 Thanks for your help and advise and I will keep y'all posted on both kids!  My oldest is a ok as far as all his antibodies. Just actually had a follow up for other immune issues and all his levels are now normal!
    • I like your plan Cara, I may have to include it in my sons.    Poor little guy is still very very sick. I think he is resisting and cheating, despite having the support of two other siblings and a 100% gluten-free home. 
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    • Well, you can probably get an apple or something.  You might be able to get someone to boil you some eggs.  But be careful of things like nuts that should be naturally gluten free.  They have almost always been soaked in a flavor solution that usually containes caramel coloring, "soy" (wheat) sauce and other aditives.  If I am really hungry and must eat in a Chinese restaurant, I order plain white rice and steamed vegetables.  But even so, you must monitor it carefully.  The rice sometimes has other substances added to give it a better texture, and very often the vegetables have in fact had "just a little bit" of soy sauce added.  To be fair, celiac disease is hardly ever found in East Asians, so understandably people are not tuned it to it.  Also, culturally, with the exception of fruits, it is generally thought that the flavor of foods needs to be enhanced, so it is had to find anything natural even in the "western" gorceries. Even in the western restaurants, be careful.  Fish and meat and often vegetables are usually pre-marinated. I will not even attempt to address the issue of cross-comtamination, since that is a whole higher order of things. I do know what I am talking about; I have celiac and have worked here for nearly 7 years.  
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