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What About Cd Causes Infertility?


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#1 OhNoes!

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Posted 25 November 2004 - 07:26 PM

Am I going to be infertile? Does it depend on how long I've been tearing up my intestines with gluten (aprox 27 years!) ? Are underweight women Celiacs infertile because of amenhorrea? About what % of us are infertile?

I know lots of women with celiac disease have had successful pregnancies, but what makes the difference between a celiac who becomes pregnant and one who doesn't? (besides sex :rolleyes: ) I'm not healthy enough right now to try for a baby, but I'm a little concerned to hear about infertility among Celiacs. My sister had four miscarriages before she carried a child to term. I understand (I think) why the body would miscarry: if it's not even getting enough nutrients to sustain one life, it's definitely not going to support two. I just don't understand what part of Celiac Disease would cause infertility.

Any info would help. Thanks!
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#2 tarnalberry

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Posted 25 November 2004 - 08:19 PM

"Infertility" includes early miscarriages - which actually occurs in about 30% of all pregnancies, the thing is that most women don't know they're pregnant when they happen because they are SO early. So the two aren't necessarily separate issues. I know a non-trivial portion of the problem is the fact that you're not absorbing the nutrients a fetus needs, and there are immune system antibodies floating around that the body thinks shouldn't be around when incubating the next generation. I'm not sure about the full details.
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Tiffany aka "Have I Mentioned Chocolate Lately?"
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
Bellevue, WA

#3 Roxyk

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Posted 01 December 2004 - 09:37 AM

I'm 36. I was "diagnosed" with unexplained infertility in May2004, celiac in June 2004. I would have a 2-12 hour period, that's all. But all my levels were fine. Once I mentioned that my dad had celiac my gyn wanted me tested.

From what I understand, your body won't absorb nutrients needed to provide enough of a lining in your uterus & you may not even be ovulating.

I am on Clomid - 150mg for the 4th month. I also see an accupuncturist. I feel I am getting more out of accupuncture for my celiac & my fertility. I drink herbs that I boil myself (so no chance of gluten/cross-contamination) twice per day. This month I had a normal period. Although I was disappointed I was not pregnant, my accupuncturist said it just goes to show I am improving overall. Once my whole body is cured, I should be able to get pregnant with no problems.

I would suggest seeing an gyn or a specialist when you are ready to start trying. Make sure they understand celiac or are willing to check into it & learn. My gyn has been incredible about it.

Good luck & I hope it happens quickly for you.
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#4 hapi2bgf

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Posted 01 December 2004 - 10:32 AM

I carried a baby to term and delivered a perfectly healthy baby while suffering from undiagnosed Celiacs. My arms, legs, and face got thinner as my belly got bigger. Three years after her birth I finally got a diagnosis of Celiacs. Now I am pregnant with my second and have had several gluten accidents (gotta love restaurants and hospitals!) and so far the baby is healthy although I am much more nervous. I was in my 30's before I got the Celiac diagnosis and have symptoms that go back to infancy.

I don't know what the connection is between Celiacs and miscarrages, but I have read about a lot of women who have a very hard time carrying a baby to term. There are also Celiac women who have no troubles with pregnancy. I would say get your diet under control, get a very good GastroInterologists who knows you are trying to get pregnant (mine recommended gaining weight before gettinbg pregnant), get a good OB, do everything to avoid gluten, and hope for the best. Since I am having a very hard time eating out while pregnant, I know do everything I can to avoid any gluten risks like not eating out and bringing food to friends houses for dinner.

Good luck with getting pregnant!
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#5 OhNoes!

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 09:00 AM

Thank you all!

OK, Tiffany, what I understand from your post is that the two main factors that cause infertility (whether that's in the form of miscarriages or not conceiving at all) are antibodies in the blood, and inability to extract enough nutrients from food to feed two people. Makes sense.

Roxyk, I wish you the very best in your efforts. Sounds like you're coming along. I know if you can find a good alternative health care specialist like your acupuncturist, they can bring you towards health faster and easier than pure allopathic medicine.

I haven't ovulated in a while (BBT charting). When I first found out about Celiac Disease I was borderline underweight. Since going gluten-free, my body became hypersensitive and I have found that low starch gluten-free/CF/preservative-free foods are all that my body can handle right now. Basically that boils down to meat, veggies, and occasionally some fruit. So I've been losing more weight, but my gut doesn't hurt most of the time. I'm thinking that's why I haven't ovulated for a while. Fat cells produce estrogen, and I just don't have enough of them working for me right now. Maybe. Dunno. We'll see what happens.

hapi, Congrats on your 2nd!!
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#6 tarnalberry

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 09:16 AM

I chart too (contraception, at this point), and have noticed that - now that I'm gluten-free - if I accidentally get gluten in the week before I would ovulate, my ovulation is delayed. Don't know exactly why that is - and it's one of the only things that delays it - but thought I'd share that wacky bit.
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Tiffany aka "Have I Mentioned Chocolate Lately?"
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
Bellevue, WA

#7 OhNoes!

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 05:31 PM

Actually Tiffany that's great to know, because at times I ovulate at very predictable intervals, but other months it's delayed by 1.5 to 2 weeks (frustrating as we use BBT as birth control also). I hadn't thought that eating something naughty by accident could be causing those delays. Hopefully I'll be back on schedule soon. As always, thanks for the info.
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#8 Rikki Tikki

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 12:05 PM

I think this information is very useful. I had a very difficult time getting pregnant and took Clomid for 2 1/2 years before getting pregnant with my first child. I took it again for my second and my third was a surprise. I never got pregnant again even though I didn't use any birth control.
Of course at the time I didn't know I had celiac disease although looking back 20 years I was having symptoms.
I wonder if there is a corelation?
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"blood work show's a disease called celiac,
but it can't be that because it's rare!"
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