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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

      This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.   Subscribe to FREE Celiac.com email alerts What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease? - list blood tests, endo with biopsy, genetic test and enterolab (not diagnostic) Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful? The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients) Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients) Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes Where can I buy gluten-free stuff? Support this site by shopping at The Celiac.com Store.

"gluten Challenge"
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12 posts in this topic

Has anyone heard of a "gluten challenge"? Where you have to be eating gluten for a certain amout of time before the biopsy for the biopsy to be correct. I had a blood test about 6 years ago and one of the antibodies was positive so I went on a gluten free diet and I also had a biopsy done 4 years ago and it came back inconclusive, but now I'm finding out that you have to have the gluten in your sytem to determine if you're really celiac or not. Is this correct?

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To have any chance at an accurate test you have to eat gluten every day for up to three months. Why are you considering this? Do you doubt that you have celiac?

richard

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I'm considering getting another endoscopy b/c it's not 100% sure that I have celiac. 6 years ago I went to an allergist and found out that I'm allergic to wheat, then I got a blood test and one of the antibodies was positive, but they said that only way to be 100% sure is to get an endoscopy. I didn't want to do that at the time, so I went on the gluten free diet and then I wound up getting the endoscopy 2 years later and the results came back inconclusive, and I'm wondering if that's b/c I wasn't eating gluten before the test (well, I may have been eating trace amounts in modified food starch, etc) So, I guess I would just like some concrete answers as to if I have celiac disease or not. I just made an appt. w/ a GI, but the earliest appt. isn't until Oct. 4th, so I'm not sure if I should try to get gluten in my system before the dr. appt. or just wait to see what he has to say.

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Did you have some sort of health problems that went away after you went gluten-free? If so, in some circles your postive blood test plus improvement on the diet would be considered proof.

Anyway, eating gluten from now until Oct. 4 might or might not be long enough. Everybody is different, but I think the top experts say you need to eat it for three months.

richard

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If you feel better on the gluten-free diet then you don't need to have the biopsy but if you have had no imporovement then you may want to have the biopsy to make sure this is actually what you have.

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What does anyone else know about how long you have to be eating gluten before a correct biopsy can be done?

Thanks

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Most experts seem to agree you need to eat gluten for at least two months, preferably three. And even then damage depends on the individual.

richard

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I just got the results from my bloodwork that was taken in 1998 while I was still eating gluten and the IGG antibody was 17.1 and the normal range was <7

I sent this to my dr. to see what he has to say. I'm hoping that I might not have to have another endoscopy done.

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Just my two cents: If you've got the antibodies for sure, skip the endoscopy. Let that be proof-I don't believe anyone should suffer the "Gluten Challenge"--that just prolongs your symptoms.

Thanks for listening,

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After 6 years of being 100% gluten free (or as close to it as possible!) it might take longer than 3 months back on gluten to cause enough damage to be seen with the endoscopy. Chances of your biopsy showing positive damage by October are pretty slim.

I did a gluten challenge this last winter and was back on gluten for two months. (I had only been gluten free off and on for a total of about two months over a two year period) My biopsy still came back negative, since most doctor will only look for complete damage. I am considering having my biopsy slides reevaluated for signs of early stages of damage, but not sure I can afford the expense.

You could try a few days back on gluten and see if it makes you feel sick. I personally wouldn't risk it, but I can understand your need for a concrete answer. That is why I had the Enterolab tests done, since the conventional tests kept coming back inconclusive and I could not commit myself to a lifelong diet if I didn't really have a problem with gluten. Well, I got so sick during that two month gluten challenge that I would never purposefully go back on gluten EVER!

Let us know what you decide to do. We'll all be here to support you no matter what you decide! :)

God bless,

Mariann

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Another thing on top of the fact that I was positive for the IGg antibodies back in 1998, I also went to an allergist then and they told me that I'm allergic to wheat. I'm just confused as what I should do.

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Well, this past weekend I did my own "gluten challenge", I ate some stuff like pizza and wheat bread and I got my answer b/c both Sat. and Sunday I had gas and integestion/acid reflux, basically I felt the way I did before I went on the gluten free diet. So my husband and I just decided that I'll stay on the gluten free diet and forget about doing the endoscopy again. If I felt this bad eating gluten for 2 days I don't want to have to eat it for 3 months before the endoscopy!

So...on with the gluten-free diet!

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