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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.

Cough As A Reaction?
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20 posts in this topic

I've had trouble for YEARS with this hacking, allergic type cough. When I was totally gluten free for a solid 9 months or so, the cough finally disappeared. Although I'm again totally and seriously gluten free (for the last 10 days only), my previous months of gluten cheating has left me with a bad cough again. I can never be totally sure this cough can be attributed to gluten, but I'm wondering if anyone else here has had that kind of reaction as one of the gluten reactions.

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Hey, I'd love to know the answer to this as well... I've had a horrific cough now for 1.5 years that gets worse directly after I eat. I was told it was GERD, but after 12 months on Prilosec, I've only seen mild improvement.

Anyone else attribute a cough to Celiac?

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My persistant cough was due to postnasal drip from congestion. After I went gluten-free, I found the congestion was due to the gluten and has since gone bye-bye. I was so grateful to not have to take antihistamine constantly and wake up coughing at night.

Hope it clears up for you too.

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I havent had a cough that could be attributed to gluten but I definately think that its a possibility for you.

I dont do well with processed foods and usually avoid it. Earlier this year while I was eating things I shouldnt have been eating I caught a cold which turned into a bad cough. Every day the cough would clear up...until I ate. Immediately after eating my cough would come back in full force. By bedtime I'd be hacking so much that it was hard to fall asleep. This continued for about 2 weeks until I finally stopped eating the processed food long enough for my body to get over the cough.

I think if I'd continued eating those foods I'd still be coughing today!!

Its not that everytime I eat those foods I develop a cough....just that eating those foods made it really hard for my body to get over the cold. Obviously those foods were dragging me down. I imagine that gluten could have been weakening your system in that same way.

I hope you get over the cough soon. :)

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I had a dry cough and asthma-like symptoms. They've gone away after 2 weeks on the diet.

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Whenever I get glutened, I immediately develop a wet cough that lasts until it's out of my system. I used to (before the diagnosis) cough continually after eating. It was bizarre. Once I went gluten-free, the cough went away.

It is so reliable, I can tell I've been glutened before my gut knows (which is generally w/in 15-20 minutes as I also severely wheat allergic...). I start coughing w/in 5-10 minutes.

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My husband has a persistent dry cough. His doctor told him it is the blood pressure meds he is on. Do you take any meds that may have a cough listed as a side-effect? It could be exacerbated by the gluten as well.

Just a thought.

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My husband has a persistent dry cough. His doctor told him it is the blood pressure meds he is on. Do you take any meds that may have a cough listed as a side-effect? It could be exacerbated by the gluten as well.

Just a thought.

My gluten reaction is dry cough and weezing along with many other things. When ever I wheeze, I go back over what I have eaten. I think it is part of it. I hope you realize how serious a condition you have and the autoimmune diseases you can get if you do not stay off gluten for good. Please think about this. Especially with the DQ 2 gene!! Take care.

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I have a 16 year old who also had a persistent cough, and since his younger brother and sister have gluten problems, I wondered if he did, too. I took him to the doctor and asked, and the doctor told me that yes, a cough could be a symptom of celiac disease, it's not a common one but it could be attributed to it. He did the blood test which came back negative, and now I think it's an allergy to molds.

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I have a 16 year old who also had a persistent cough, and since his younger brother and sister have gluten problems, I wondered if he did, too. I took him to the doctor and asked, and the doctor told me that yes, a cough could be a symptom of celiac disease, it's not a common one but it could be attributed to it. He did the blood test which came back negative, and now I think it's an allergy to molds.

Your son may be "gluten sensitive" rather than celiac. It might be worth doing the diet to try and see if the cough stops.

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i too have this constant aggravating cough sometimes dry sometimes wet. I too have been wondering if it's gluten related. I'll be more stringent and report back.

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Every day the cough would clear up...until I ate. Immediately after eating my cough would come back in full force. By bedtime I'd be hacking so much that it was hard to fall asleep. This continued for about 2 weeks until I finally stopped eating the processed food long enough for my body to get over the cough.

Interesting... your description seems to match to mine perfectly. I wake up in the AM cough free, then I start coughing a little after breakfast (sometimes more than other times, depending on what I eat). Then my cough subsides mid-morning, and picks up again after lunch, subsides mid-afternoon, picks up again more heavily after dinner and usually gets worse until bedtime. The end of the day is always the worst.

When I get the cough it's a wet cough - I feel like I have phelgm from my sinuses to my stomach. And the worst part is that I cough and it never seems to help move or remove the phelgm. But I know it's not a cold - because my mucus is clear and I can breathe through my nose with no problem.

I started keeping a food journal of what I eat on the 1st, to see if I can track any patterns. I'm going in to have my blood tested tomorrow, and I didn't want to start eating "gluten-free" until after I'd had the test (especially after reading about others' adventures with the test).

Right now I'm not sure which is the lesser of two evils following the test... finding out I have Celiac and having to make lifestyle adjustments... or having it come back negative and STILL not know what is wrong with me!

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My persistant cough was due to postnasal drip from congestion. After I went gluten-free, I found the congestion was due to the gluten and has since gone bye-bye. I was so grateful to not have to take antihistamine constantly and wake up coughing at night.

This sounds similar to my problem. I'm pretty sure the cough is either fully or partially from post-nasal drip. That makes perfect sense that the gluten could trigger it given that I get post-nasal drip from allergy related congestion.

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Interesting... your description seems to match to mine perfectly. I wake up in the AM cough free, then I start coughing a little after breakfast (sometimes more than other times, depending on what I eat). Then my cough subsides mid-morning, and picks up again after lunch, subsides mid-afternoon, picks up again more heavily after dinner and usually gets worse until bedtime. The end of the day is always the worst.

When I get the cough it's a wet cough - I feel like I have phelgm from my sinuses to my stomach. And the worst part is that I cough and it never seems to help move or remove the phelgm. But I know it's not a cold - because my mucus is clear and I can breathe through my nose with no problem.

I started keeping a food journal of what I eat on the 1st, to see if I can track any patterns. I'm going in to have my blood tested tomorrow, and I didn't want to start eating "gluten-free" until after I'd had the test (especially after reading about others' adventures with the test).

Right now I'm not sure which is the lesser of two evils following the test... finding out I have Celiac and having to make lifestyle adjustments... or having it come back negative and STILL not know what is wrong with me!

I had the blood test and found out they only did one part of it first of all, and then I was gluten free for a few weeks, but mine came back negative. I had done the challenge diet and had good results off of the gluten and sicker than a dog back on it. I had the gene test because I was sure it was the gluten. I am severly gluten sensitive, but do not have full blown celiac. So if your test comes back negative, beware, you could still be gluten sensitive, which leads to full blown celiac. I got a book called "The Gluten Connection", best information I have read yet. You might want to check it out.

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I had the blood test and found out they only did one part of it first of all, and then I was gluten free for a few weeks, but mine came back negative. I had done the challenge diet and had good results off of the gluten and sicker than a dog back on it. I had the gene test because I was sure it was the gluten. I am severly gluten sensitive, but do not have full blown celiac. So if your test comes back negative, beware, you could still be gluten sensitive, which leads to full blown celiac. I got a book called "The Gluten Connection", best information I have read yet. You might want to check it out.

I bought the book and read almost the whole thing last night. Very interesting. Thanks for the suggestion.

I am curious... if your test came back negative, did you simply decide to go gluten free yourself? Or did you have further testing? Or did your doctor say you might simply be gluten sensitive? I have a fear that I'll get a negative test result and the doc will tell me it's all in my head!

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I bought the book and read almost the whole thing last night. Very interesting. Thanks for the suggestion.

I am curious... if your test came back negative, did you simply decide to go gluten free yourself? Or did you have further testing? Or did your doctor say you might simply be gluten sensitive? I have a fear that I'll get a negative test result and the doc will tell me it's all in my head!

I had the endescope with biopsy after being gluten free for over two months and it also came back negative. That is why I decided to have the gene test (results below) and then did a pile of research on the genes that I have. Gluten sensitivity is the beginning of celiac disease and can cause many serious neurological problems with or without digestive issues. (I have gotten rid of Gerd completely since gluten free and still have lower colon problems) The gluten attacks the base of the brain when you are sensitive rather than celiac. My genes are the ones that usually cause gluten ataxia. Celiacs neurological problems are usually caused by Malabsorption of neutrients. My Allergist is the one who diagnosed me and then my MD finally believed I had a problem when I took the gene test into her along with my symptoms and many tests ruling out many other things that could have caused my problems. Many Doctors are unaware that you can have just as serious a problems when you are gluten sensitive as apposed to having a confirmation of celiac. They just think you have to be a "positive" on celiac test to be diagnosed with a gluten problem. If your Doctor does this, you need a new one that has researched enough to know about this. Many people that come back negative for celiac are told to go ahead and eat the stuff not knowing it can still cause you a lifetime of health problems and auto-immune diseases that could have been avoided.

If you know by the diet that you are having problems with gluten, for heavens sake, don't worry about a diagnosis, just stop eating it to save yourself. But I understand wanting a diagnosis, because I pushed for one myself.

Another thing is that it appears you can only get the "tax deduction" for food if it is a "Celiac" diagnosis only! Now thats just not fair! I spend a lot more on food now.

I notice that other countries are doing a lot more research and are more up to date on the sensitive issue. There is a lot of info on line if you google gluten sesitive along with celiac. I find I have to educate my medical people all the time. It just isn't "out there" enough yet. I say above all, listen to your body! I am still trying to find an educated MD in Maine, haven't yet! My Allergist is the one who knows the most about it.

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It was actually acute and chronic bronchitis that made my doctor suggest celia disease. Once I went off gluten (and dairy, I seem to have issues there as well) I gradually felt better, lost the constant bronchitis and even the intermitant coughing. Three years later, I'm about 98% gluten-free and dairy free, but when I eat something that constains either, I get a itchy dry cough and sometimes a mild sore throat before the lethargy hits. These all fade as long as I don't touch anything else. If I continue to eat bad food or eat a very large amount, I will get very very sick with first a cough, then a cold with a sore throat and have to take precautions to not let it develop into bronchitis.

I just ate something with a bit of farina in it and I'm getting an itchy cough already... serves me right for trying farina out...

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This is so strange. I know know that I have celiac disease or at least am gluten-sensitive. When my sibling was diagnosed with celiac disease, I had to switch to a gluten-free diet to make things easier on my mom. I lived gluten-free for a year and then I had to go to a boarding school where I was back on gluten again. I developed a chronic cough that only stopped when I was sleeping. I can't remember if it was wet or dry, but it was with me ALL DAY LONG. I had it for one year.

I then returned to my mom and she immediately put me on a gluten-free diet again. The cough went away in one week.

In the years after that, I did go back to eating gluten without the cough returning -- but I always cough after meals. I will see if it goes away when I return to a gluten-free diet.

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I had a dry cough and asthma-like symptoms. They've gone away after 2 weeks on the diet.

Same here! Two weeks and its gone, I'm amazed at how quickly this diet seems to be working for me :)

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My mother and I both coughed for decades.  I was told that I had chronic bronchitis, reactive airway disease, exercise induced asthma, allergies, etc.  We were both seen by allergists in different states who tested us for seasonal allergies.  We both continued to suffer and found little relief from steroids and inhalers.  And, when one of us would get sick, it would turn into bronchitis with severe coughing fits.  I gave up gluten for other health reasons and viola...my 20+ year productive cough disappeared overnight!  My mom gave it a try and her cough disappeared as well.  Her cough was so persistent that she did it in her sleep.  My dad says he is getting the best nights sleep he has had in decades.  My husband is in the military and I have lived in 10 different locations over the years.  I have seen countless doctors across the country and in Europe.  No one considered a food allergy or gluten as the reason for my cough.  We are so glad that we finally have an answer...and our husbands are glad too :)

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