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Can A Person Have Malabsorption/weight Loss Without Diarrhea?
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It seems that most people with Celiacs have diarrhea. I was wondering because I don't really have diarrhea...and yet I mysteriously lost 20 lbs and I used to get lots of weird symptoms that seemed related to food. If anything, I actually get constipated about once a week.

Thanks

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It seems that most people with Celiacs have diarrhea. I was wondering because I don't really have diarrhea...and yet I mysteriously lost 20 lbs and I used to get lots of weird symptoms that seemed related to food. If anything, I actually get constipated about once a week.

Thanks

While diarrhea predominates the symptoms, constipation runs a close second. And some people alternate between the two. It is not necessary to have diarrhea to suffer from malabsorption; in fact, many people have silent celiac where they suffer no self-reported symptoms. So do not be surprised that you can lose weight without having diarrhea. Do be aware though that with food malabsorption and weight loss you will not be getting the essential nutrients you need.

I see that your endoscopy was negative. Did you have positive celiac blood testing? Or are you left in no-man's land with negative everything? From your previous topic you asked a question - I am not sure if this is the answer, but you can have a pill-cam test where you actually swallow a mini-cam and it takes pictures throughtout your digestive tract, and then is recovered at the end. But a doctor may not be willing to order that if your other testing has been negative.

Some of us will never pass the tests, yet are non-celiac gluten intolerant with many of the same symptoms and complaints as celiacs. We also need a gluten free diet. We just don't have doctors telling us (well most of us don't) that that is what we should do. We have to take the initiative ourselves.

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It seems that most people with Celiacs have diarrhea. I was wondering because I don't really have diarrhea...and yet I mysteriously lost 20 lbs and I used to get lots of weird symptoms that seemed related to food. If anything, I actually get constipated about once a week.

Thanks

Some celiacs (including me) had constipation, rather than diarrhea, as their chronic symptom. I also had cramping pain and bloating. 4 years after I was dx'd with celiac, I was dx'd w/ Hashimoto's hypothyroidism, which commonly occurs among people w/ gluten intolerance. Because my doctor rigidly used the classic profile for celiac (diarrhea, short, thin and fatigued), she dismissed my last 3 symptoms, because I didn't have diarrhea. Hashimoto's often causes constipation and weight gain, because it slows metabolism. So the same doc dismissed my other Hashimoto's symptoms, because I didn't have a weight problem (I was underweight because of celiac disease). Symptoms of one disease masked the other disease. SIGH So I learned that you don't need ALL the classic symptoms to have a disease like celiac disease or Hashimoto's thyroiditis. I wonder how long doctors will continue to hold rigid views of (and profiles for) various autoimmune diseases.

So you could have celiac disease even w/o diarrhea or other 'classic' symptoms.

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I had neither diarrhea NOR constipation but had maladsoprtion AND weight loss (30 pounds in 5 months)...That was a big part of diagnosis, because I didn't have THOSE symptoms.

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I was the same way - I was losing weight so fast (and I DON'T have the weight to lose). All my tests came back "normal" or negative. But once I cut out gluten (and most carbs), started eating better, and religiously taking my supplements, the weight started to come back. I never really had a lot of digestive trouble - mostly just bloating and gas. But I had classic neurological symptoms - I can tell almost instantly if I've been glutened because the headache I get from it is unlike any other that I've had. A couple days later, I will be angry and anxious.

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Yes a person can have a nutritional defiency without having "D".

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I didn't have diarrhea but lost 70 pounds over a 9 month period. Constipation was more common for me.

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I had lost weight years ago (probably when I first developed celiac, although I just got diagnosed last summer) but was then stuck at a very thin weight and couldn't gain a pound to save my life. I was starving all the time and ate like 4000+ calories a day, but did not have any bowel issues. When I finally had an endoscopy it showed complete villous atrophy so I was clearly malabsorbing, but no diarrhea. The portion of the GI tract that is not damaged does have an amazing way of compensating (to an extent) for the damaged portion by taking on more absorbtion capabilities- which is also why many people diagnosed with celiac can also be overweight, when you would assume they would all be underweight.

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I had neither C or D but loosing 20+ lbs in less than a month is what finally got my doctors worried and got them to move away from the "it's all in her head" diagnosis!

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I lost weight without D as well. And like the above posters no one would consider celiac because of it even though my mother was diagnosed :angry:

And now I don't lost weight anymore - I put it on instead - doh! :lol:

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    • Hi! I received my "official" celiac diagnosis last week. I had an endoscopy last month that was originally looking for ulcers and h. pylori, but they did some biopsies of my duodenum since they were in the neighborhood and the biopsy came back "consistent with Celiac's disease" and later. They urged me to get my blood checked and follow up with my primary doctor. My blood work came back negative, but my doctor was confident it's Celiac so told me to stay away from gluten. I've been completely gluten free (or to the best of my knowledge) for 2 weeks now, and my results are mixed. At first, I felt great! My stomach was no longer CRAZY bloated once I stopped eating pasta and bread, my acne started healing, and the red rash on the back of my arms started to fade. That was the first few days. Lately, though, my acne is once again flaring up and I've been SO EXHAUSTED. I feel so tired all the time. Even now I have fatigue in my head, limbs, and I could hardly walk or move my body earlier today. I'm overweight and I like to go to the gym, but what used to be an easy workout for me is kicking my ass! I used to go to the gym and tear it up: HIIT on the treadmill followed by 40 minutes of heavy weight lifting. Now I can hardly finish 3 reps in my first set without feeling like a nap. I can't run anymore because my body feels clumsy and heavy. Also, I'm still bloated. I don't suffer from painful, acute bloating, but I struggle to pass gas and I look like I have pregnant belly. I think I'm also retaining water all over my body, and I'm not sure if that's normal? For whatever reason, I have this belief that water is mainly retained in the core and not arms, legs, and face. Anyway, I'd love to hear what you have to say/what you've experienced. Is this typical to first going gluten free?
    • Thanks Stephanie & Gemini for the info. that the 4 of 5 doesn't apply to children. I wasn't aware of that until now. 
    • I think the posters above have given you very good information and I will throw in my 2 cents worth.  I am surprised that they did not test her DGP IgA also.  I am sure that would have been positive.  They switched off with antibody classes and usually they do both tests for both antibodies.  IgA is more specific to Celiac but the IgG is also useful.  The testing shows your daughter is producing antibodies to the gluten in her diet. (DGP IGG). THe tTg shows positive for some damage or inflammation. You know........your daughter is only 4.  She hasn't been on the planet or eating gluten that long. It can take years for enough damage to occur for it to be able to be found on biopsy.  I would say it is highly likely that this is Celiac, especially with her symptoms. But because the damage hasn't graduated to bad enough yet, they won't diagnose her. I think you need to do what others have said and get all copies of testing and find someone else who will take a look and give a diagnosis, especially if they have you do a dietary trial and her symptoms go away.  That might be the only recourse if you want faster proof. I know I would want faster.  I would not really be happy if I thought I had to keep feeding her something that was making her sick.  If you keep her on gluten long enough, the diarrhea will probably show up. BTW.........the criteria mentioned regarding diagnosis does not apply to kids.  I know it's silly and stupid but most leading Celiac specialists do not go by this criteria for kids.......adults only.  Keep that in mind because it might come up.  You could recognize it but they might not. Have you considered gene testing, to help bolster a diagnosis? As far as false positives go, it's the other way around. False negatives happen more frequently than many people think.  It's a recurring theme here.  With her symptoms, which is what I had, a bloated belly and tummy aches are telling.  Have they tested her for lactose intolerance?  That can cause similar symptoms, although it sure won't raise those 2 blood tests.  Keep looking for Celiac because there are many red flags here.
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