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Possible Celiac- College

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I am a 20 year old college student, and I've been trying to figure out what's wrong with my stomach for about two years now. It started at the end of high school, with family doctors suggesting that my diarrhea was a result of academic stress. Later, I was treated for irritable bowel syndrome, with no results. About halfway through my second semester in college, I had lost about 10-15 pounds, and discovered that I had a kidney stone. Because I was scheduled to have a colonoscopy on the day that my stone was discovered, I was hospitalized. The colonoscopy showed nothing, but later test indicated that I possibly had crohn's disease. After nearly 8 months of taking pentasa for crohn's, I am still exhibiting many symptoms, and a recent set of blood tests showed nothing for crohn's. Earlier this year, for no apparent reason, I suddenly became unable to tolerate milk or most milk products. I have also noticed vomiting and diarrhea after consuming pasta. Also, I was struck by the discussion of "brain fog" as mental fogginess has plagued me increasingly for the last two years, becoming quite debilitating to my college studies. My girlfriend has noticed in me (and I agree) severe irritability and mood swings, usually accompanied with skin and eye irritation, all of whice surround the ingestion of food. Also, I had the enamel of a tooth crumble for basically no reason. I worked really hard to get to earn an academic scholarship to a really expensive college, and I am seeing it all thrown away, with peers and instructors accusing me of laziness (I find myself having to sleep all of the time). If anyone could tell me what they think the probability of this being Celiac's disease is, or if you could just give me some good advice, I'd really appreciate it. Thank you.



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The symptoms you describe sounds very much like Celiac Disease. Have them test you for the antigliaden antibodies and they can give you a biopsy in your small intestine to confirm. If you are currently wheat free though, this will skew your test results and be difficult to diagnose. I think reading around this site has probably confirmed what you are already thinking.

Please don't give up on the doctors. Be vocal and don't let them tell you nothing is wrong. Many celiacs fall through the cracks, dr.'s want to treat us for all the symptoms we are producing and don't realize it's the disease that's the problem. You will feel better once you find out exactly what it is in your diet that is bothering you.

I come to this site often and learn something new all the time. I'll be thinking of you and hope that you find someone to help you very soon!




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Dear Kyle, welcome to the board. Two of my main symptoms were

brain fog and eyes which burned constantly, sometimes pulsating.

My MD, allergist, thyroid doc, all said allergy. My skin test were positive

for the usual trees, grass, mold and ragweed but NEG FOR WHEAT.

To make a long story short, I began to have GI symptoms, nausea,

diarrhea, pain in right side along with the eye problems. After a score of tests

my new GI doc gave me a diagnosis of IBS,GERD, and an allergy to wheat

Fast Forward to 11/03 I began a gluten-free diet which cleared up all of these symptoms

except the brain fog after eating. I read a post on the old board that brain fog

can be caused by ingesting milk, so I am now lactose free and doing much better!

P.S. I also got brain fog from a dental cleaning, now I make sure there products

are gluten-free. Hope this helps...


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Sounds classic to me! Whether or not you can afford to get tested, or whether or not your tests show you have it (there is sooooo much debate on whether they are accurate) it can't hurt to go gluten free for awhile at least and see how you feel. Not that that is easy to do, but it is much better than feeling like you do when there is a possible and doable solution. Good luck and let us know how things turn out!


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Please ask for testing before you try the gluten free diet. I am speaking from personal experience, it is much harder to get accurate testing, and also causes more damage to your body to go back on gluten after being gluten free. You have to be on a normal to high gluten diet for tests to be somewhat accurate, and even then sometimes the tests fail due to human error in the doctor, lab techs, etc. But don't be discouraged. You are on the right track and need testing done to confirm it. Ask for a complete celiac panel and have them include the total serum IgA.

God bless,

Mariann :)


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    • It only takes a minute to make a difference. Celiac disease has been overshadowed by the gluten-free diet fad. Getting diagnosed and staying healthy is no piece of cake – those of us who have celiac disease struggle to stay healthy. We need better. We need to be understood. We need a cure. View the full article
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    • Advil (ibuprofen) is gluten-free, but can be a stomach irritant, especially if taken on an empty stomach. That said, I will also place my bet on the garlic and onions. As Raven said, eating more than once a day may also help. An empty stomach is likely to be an irritable stomach.
    • Another link:
    • Thanks for posting.  I know it is difficult to talk about these sorts of things even on a webforum.  It is good thing for people to be aware though about celiac disease and that it can cause mental problems.  Gluten can cause brain damage and it can cause anxiety. If the brain does heal it may take a long time. I know that gluten can cause anxiety and obsessive thoughts.  My experience has been similar to your experience. When I first quit eating gluten I had a similar constant loop and strong negative feelings. There are lots of people on this forum who get anxiety when they eat gluten. Some people also experience gluten withdrawl where they experience anxiety after giving up gluten. It can take a long time for the body to heal and for obsessive thoughts to go away.
       It is normal for people to socialize with each other and to be comfortable about it. You said you have problems still socializing and being around people. It might be a depressing thought but it sounds to me like you still have problems with anxiety.  I would recommend considering what options you have available to treat the anxiety. When I quit eating Gluten I still had some symptoms, even though I felt much better. I have been slowly recovering over a period of about three years. I had obsessive thoughts even after I quit eating gluten.  Now I very rarely if at all think about those things. My experience is that my mind would latch on to certain things that caused me anxiety and focus on those things. Sometimes my focus would shift and I would latch onto other things. My ability to socialize has also improved greatly with time. I have made some dietary changes which I believe have helped greatly. It sounds to me like you have obsessive thoughts about things and maybe some brain damage. My experience has been that my obsessive thoughts about different things went away with time. I feel my obsessive thoughts were caused by gluten and not by what people did around me or any events. As my brain healed I became more self aware and things became less stressful.  I can't give medical advice on this forum but I can talk about my current diet and my experience with celiac disease. My experience with gluten is different from a lot of other people so it is a good idea to ask other people and to talk to a doctor.  I avoid oats and avoid almost all processed foods. I buy certified gluten free food. I eat healthy and I exercise every day. I take st John's Wort as I have read studies that say it may be as effective as some other anti-depressants for treating certain types of anxiety. It is available over the counter. I started with a small dosage and then stepped it up over time. I think it helps a lot.  This is also something that you should talk to a doctor about first.'s_wort/links/540d8acc0cf2f2b29a386673.pdf A lot of people with celiac disease have vitamin deficiencies.  Vitamin b deficiency can cause anxiety. Some people do not process the synthetic form of vitamin b (from normal pills)  very well, and do better on an activated form of vitamin b. I take:
      1 activated vitamin b12 daily
      1 activated vitamin b6 every once in a while. 1 regular vitamin b multivitamin
      1 magnesium pill every day.
      St Johns Wort daily.
      1 zinc vitamin daily
      I drink lots of Chamomile tea and decaf coffee. I avoid most caffeine. 
      I think each of these helps lower my anxiety level.  I eat fruit with every meal. Canned fruit from walmart is cheap and good for you. I eat salad and and vegetables and avoid dairy.  I eat frozen fish often as it has healthy proteins. Eating healthy is very important. I eat potatoes and rice. I avoid eating soy sauce, soy, cheese, aged meats and fermented foods (I do drink certain types of alcohol in moderate amounts.) These foods contain lots of Tyramine. I might (or might not) have "monoaine oxidase deficiency" and if so high Tyramine foods should be avoided.  I thought I might have problems with elevated ammonia in my blood, but I am not convinced of that anymore. I limited my consumption of meat for a while as well as dairy but I am not sure if i helped.  I have heard that Celiac disease can effect other organs besides the brain and those organs can have an effect on the brain.  My current diet is working so I am going to stick with it for now. I try not to worry about things that are outside of my control. Be patient as it took me a long time to recover.  Let me know if you have any questions. There is a lot of information on this site and people who are willing to help.
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