Blood Test Positive
Posted 13 June 2004 - 08:22 PM
Surely by now, after living with IBS symptoms for 20 years and carefully documenting which foods affect me, I would have noticed some sort of connection if this was the problem, wouldn't I have? And further, wouldn't it be easier, cheaper and more practical for me to just try eliminating wheat products for a couple of weeks and seeing if I notice some improvement or not? As opposed to a biopsy that is? I guess I'm just a bit amazed that suddenly they want to take a biopsy for something that I don't really show the symptoms for having in the first place and I don't really even understand what the test results mean. As near as I can tell, a negative blood test result is supposed to be a pretty good sign that you don't have Celiac, but a positive result really doesn't mean much other than that you "might" have it. Is this correct? Please help me understand all this, I'm bewildered and befuddled by this news.
Posted 13 June 2004 - 08:25 PM
I know if you post them here, someone will jump in with an answer!
Posted 13 June 2004 - 08:29 PM
Posted 13 June 2004 - 09:32 PM
I haven't had a biopsy, I went off of blood tests alone. But the thing is, depening on your symptoms - and they vary as much as IBS symptoms can - keeping a food diary may NOT have told you anything depending on how you tested foods. For instance, if you tried to avoid wheat one week, and had sandwhiches on rye bread instead, you weren't avoiding gluten at all! Or if you avoided all bread to be on the safe side, but had chinese food that involved soy sauce, you weren't avoiding gluten at all! Not to mention it being hidden in modified food starch, barley malt, "natural flavorings", and so many other things.
Assuming that when you wrote "try eliminating wheat products", and assuming you had tried this in the past, you meant all gluten containing products, then it may depend on how long you eliminated all gluten containing products. Some of us get reactions fairly quickly (I get a bit dizzy and funny headed within half an hour, and my intestines "warble" within 24 hours), but some don't. Some celiacs, silent celiacs, don't get any symptoms whatsoever, but their intestines are still being damaged. So your food diary would help, but only if you include symptoms over a long enough duration after the consumption, you eliminated all potential gluten containing products (including those envelopes I am finally remembering not to lick! ;-) ), and you are not a silent celiac.
As for the tests, someone else correct me if I'm wrong, but most of the tests can't report a false positive. The body produces an antibody (and that's what the blood test looks for) only if it is negatively reacting to something. The sources I found note that the tTg test is 90% specific, and 95% sensitive - of course, this assumes that you've got enough damage in your intestines that the antibodies created inside your intestines can leak into the blood stream.
Inconclusive Blood Tests, Positive Dietary Results, No Endoscopy
G.F. - September 2003; C.F. - July 2004
Hiker, Yoga Teacher, Engineer, Painter, Be-er of Me
Posted 14 June 2004 - 06:47 AM
Posted 14 June 2004 - 09:12 AM
Posted 14 June 2004 - 09:24 AM
I would say go for the diet and see how it goes!
Posted 14 June 2004 - 05:10 PM
Posted 15 June 2004 - 06:31 AM
I say if you have positive blood results then there is no need for the biopsy because there is no guarantee the results would be 100% accurate. You CAN have a negative biopsy and still have it gluten sensitivity / Celiac!!!! It takes time for this disease to show up in blood-work or to damage your villi.
I hope you find some answers soon and begin to feel better!
Posted 17 June 2004 - 09:59 PM
The only discomfort I have had from my intestines this week has been from the increase in vegetables and fruit replacing the gluten-based snacks I used to eat- I find that it takes a lot more fruit and vegies to fill me up than it ever did snack crackers for instance, and I have had a bit of bloating from that but the spasms and other symptoms have literally vanished! Gone! Adios! I am still in amazement!
Posted 18 June 2004 - 07:38 AM
I am glad you are feeling better and can tell a difference being gluten free! I too forgot what it felt like to be "normal"! Itís amazing that an ingredient can wreck such havoc on our bodies! Yes the fruit and veggies can create a problem too, I eat them but only a little at a time.
Keep up the good work!!!! Most of all CONGRADS on feeling better!
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