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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.

Symptoms Similar To Celiac Disease
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I'm a 26 year old male, who in the past few years have had some major stomach problems. About four years ago I had a nasty parasite that caused me to lose about 65lbs. After healing from that, they found that the parasite had attacked my gall bladder, causing me to have that removed. For a year or so I started feeling better, then what I thought was the flu hit me. Instead it was cdiff, which I had 4 times in one year. After getting over that I started gaining weight, but never felt all there. Had a lot of bloating and gas. Well for the last 2 months it has picked up alot. I get very very bloated and gassy. This seems to be hitting me at night more than the day. But its also making me very nauseous. It wakes me up in the middle of the night and I can here my stomach churning and making noises. I have a lot of gas and burp a lot. I also have been really tired and get kind of stiff or sore in the muscles. The only reason I suspect it could be celiac is because my grandpa has it. I havent been tested for food allergies, but will here in the next few days. Also another thing is , when these symptoms started it seemed like I was very stressed. The bloated and gassy feeling I have comes and goes, but these last few months have been terrible. Sometimes I cant make it ten mntures after eating to rush to the bathroom. Then sometimes I wont go for a day or two, then when I do go , I will have to go several times. If anyone has any opinions please respond. I just wont to feel better and know its not all in my head! Thanks!

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Hello, and welcome to the boards. I hope you will feel you are in good company :)

No, I do not believe it is all in your head, and I do not believe it is because you are stressed, apart from the condition itself being stressful, I am glad you are going to get tested. Make sure you are tested for celiac disease first, a panel which consists of the following tests:

Anti-Gliadin (AGA) IgA

Anti-Gliadin (AGA) IgG

Anti-Endomysial (EMA) IgA

Anti-Tissue Transglutaminase (tTG) IgA

Deamidated Gliadin Peptide (DGP) IgA and IgG

Total Serum IgA

If they baulk at doing them all make sure they at least do the last three. Whatever you do, do not stop eating gluten until your testing is finished as this can affect your results. If celiac runs in the family this is much more likely to be your problem than the average person on the street. Your symptoms are certainly consistent, including the alternating constipation and diarrhea.

A c.diff infection can really knock one back and I recently found some experiences on the net which indicate one might never fully recover from it, that it does leave some lasting damage. And celiac disease seems to make us more susceptible to these gut bugs because our body does not have the strength to fight them off.

So get thee to thy physician and get yourself tested right smart. And do let us know the results. :) Good luck!

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Thanks for the response. Cdiff was no fun at ALL! I honestly thought I was going to die the first time I had it. I was in the hospital for a few days pretty much knocked out on morphine. It seems since that, I havent felt right. Not fun for an active male in his mid 20s. I have a few more questions. Sometimes I do feel alright and can eat fine. But Im always rushing to the bathroom. Also my hips and knees always feel stiff. Is joint stiffness a symptom? I really hope in part of my mind I'm positive for celiac. It would give me some resolution! I just want answers....

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Yes, joint problems are a common symptom in celiac persons, ranging from stiffness to rheumatoid arthritis, so here's hoping once you get off gluten - regardless of your test results, do give the gluten free diet a good trial once your testing is complete - that they go away :)

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Also, it seems like my symptoms really bother me at night. It has been waking me about almost nightly for the past month or two. A lot of nauseous and churning of the stomach. It last about an hour. If I pass gas or burp it tends to make it better, but I also feel very weak during this. Has anyone else had these symptoms?

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Oh yeah!!! I could burp / belch for an hour :D

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Evenings were definitely the worst time for symptoms; I would get more pregnant looking as the day wore on. LOL

Joint pain and stiffness was a big one for me, and it's finally STARTING to improve after 6 months on the diet. That symptom takes a while to go for many people, so be patient once you go gluten-free.

Good luck with your testing!

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    • Gluten ataxia...?
      I was explaining that some people have other trouble that is immune related and caused by eating gluten, but doesn't effect the gut in a noticeable way. According to the paper that I quoted there are some people which have different types of brain problems but don't have inflammation when tested by a biopsy.  The author used the term "non-Celiac gluten sensitivity" to refer to anyone who has any brain trouble that can be traced to gluten but without obvious gut inflammation.  There are a lot of different possible ways gluten can effect the brain some may not be related to the gut.  It could still be an immune system problem.  Normally "non-Celiac gluten sensitivity" refers to just a food intolerance.  Withdrawal symptoms are not normal and could be indicative of an immune system response of some sort, but I don't know for sure.        
    • Weird Reaction
      Hi Richie I've put the above in quotes as you have described in the first and second sentence how I felt six months prior to my DX.   In my own case, in the end I concluded it was anxiety after consulting Dr Google!  It was such an alien feeling to me, I couldn't even think what it was, particularly as life was pretty good at the time.  Anxiety is a problem for a lot of celiacs prior to diagnosis, and often after glutening after going gluten-free. You mention breathlessness, this of course can be for reasons such as anaemia (again a common celiac problem, I had this prior to DX) but of course also can arise if you are anxious.   Re 'gluten free' - Flowerqueen is right, from what I have read on this forum some people really do seem to react with less than 20ppm.    But perhaps some other things to consider...  could there be something wrong with the batch you have consumed?  Might it be worth contacting the manufacturers?   That said, you could , as Flowerqueen suggests, have a problem with another ingredient, in the product or something else you consumed. In the past I have had a terrible reaction - fever, trembling, diarrhea, stomach cramps that lasted up to three hours the last three times I ate..... broccoli, of all things.    Who would have thought that possible?  I have often thought I should try it again, just to be sure it was the broccoli, as it is a 'super food' that I ought to have in my diet, that I like very much, but the thought of having such a reaction again has put me off. I do hope you will find some answers soon.  
    • Weird Reaction
      Hi Richie,  I've not heard of this drink before, as I live in the UK, but any drink made from barley is something you should avoid.  There's a brand in the UK that makes lemon and barley water and orange and barley water and Coeliac UK say it is not safe for people with Coeliac disease.  (Our labelling laws in the UK changed a couple of years ago).  You say the drink you had was under 20 ppm, which is acceptable (usually) for coeliacs, but a lot of people are super-sensitive to gluten even in very small amounts.  I recently had a similar problem with something which was supposed to be okay for coeliacs, but when I checked the website of the product, for all it said there were no gluten containing ingredients, it was produced in an area where gluten was present, which was enough to put me off and must admit, the symptoms you describe sound very much like I experienced at the time.  (Personally I'd be avoiding that particular drink like the plague from now on). One other thing though,  have you checked the ingredients to see if there could be anything else in it which you may be intolerant to? 
    • Confused
      I have not. I'll talk to my doctor about it
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