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  • About Me

    Jefferson Adams earned his B.A. and M.F.A. at Arizona State University, and has authored more than 2,000 articles on celiac disease. His coursework includes studies in biology, anatomy, medicine, science, and advanced research, and scientific methods. He previously served as Health News Examiner for Examiner.com, and devised health and medical content for Sharecare.com. Jefferson has spoken about celiac disease to the media, including an appearance on the KQED radio show Forum, and is the editor of the book "Cereal Killers" by Scott Adams and Ron Hoggan, Ed.D.

  • Related Articles

    Scott Adams
    Wahab PJ, Meijer JW, Mulder CJ.
    Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Rijnstate Hospital Arnhem, The Netherlands.
    Am J Clin Pathol 118(3):459-463, 2002
    Celiac.com 10/28/2002 - The following study strongly supports follow-up care and testing for people with celiac disease. As the study found, over 10% of people with diagnosed celiac disease have still not fully recovered even after five years of treatment.
    To assess histologic recovery in response to gluten withdrawal in celiac disease, 158 patients seen in our hospital during a 15-year period underwent follow-up small intestine biopsies (SIBs) within 2 years after starting a gluten-free diet; further SIBs were done if villous atrophy was present. A modified Marsh classification was used (IIIA, partial villous atrophy; IIIB, subtotal villous atrophy; IIIC, total villous atrophy). Of patients with Marsh IIIA, IIIB, or IIIC lesions, histologic remission was seen in 65.0% within 2 years, 85.3% within 5 years, and 89.9% in long-term follow-up. Eleven patients (7.0%) with persisting (partial) villous atrophy had symptoms and signs of malabsorption and were considered to have refractory celiac disease; 5 of them developed an enteropathy-associated T-cell lymphoma. Children recovered up to 95% within 2 years and 100% in the long-term. Histologic recovery in celiac disease after starting a gluten-free diet takes time and is incomplete or absent in a substantial subgroup of patients (10.1% villous atrophy after 5 years). Systematic follow-up of patients with celiac disease and the malabsorption syndrome and secondary complications is needed.

    Scott Adams
    J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 2004 May 13
    Piper JL, Gray GM, Khosla C. Stanford University.
    Celiac.com 11/28/2004 - A study by researchers at Stanford University looked at the ability of Prolyl endopeptidase (PEP)--a specific type of enzyme--to break down gliadin peptides in a living organism--rats. In an effort to determine whether a resistance to the break down of proteins by proteases enzymes is the cause of toxicity of the Pro- and Gln-rich peptides, the scientists analyzed the digestive resistance of a panel of alpha and gamma-gliadin peptides that are believed to induce gluten toxicity--all of which happen to be very resistant to gastric and pancreatic protease digestion--but can be broken down by intestinal brush border peptidases. The researchers determined that supplementation of PEP substantially reduced the concentrations of these peptides, and they determined a pharmacologically useful PEP dosage. According to the researchers: "This data verifies and extends our earlier proposal that gliadin peptides, while resistant to proteolysis, can be processed efficiently by PEP supplementation. Indeed, PEP may be able to treat Celiac Sprue by reducing or eliminating such peptides from the intestine."

    Jefferson Adams
    A Systematic Review of Diagnostic Testing for Celiac Disease Among Patients With Abdominal Symptoms
    Celiac.com 06/03/2010 - Clinical presentation of celiac disease can vary considerably from patient to patient. Most patients with celiac disease present atypical symptoms. Moreover, most patients who present abdominal symptoms in primary care do not have celiac disease, and so diagnostic tests for celiac disease are not necessary and should be avoided.
    A team of researchers recently conducted a systematic review of diagnostic testing for celiac disease among patients with abdominal symptoms.
    The team included Daniëlle A. W. M. van der Windt, PhD; Petra Jellema, PhD; Chris J. Mulder, MD, PhD; C. M. Frank Kneepkens, MD, PhD; and Henriëtte E. van der Horst, MD, PhD. Their article appears in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
    The goal of the research was to review and summarize evidence on the performance of diagnostic tests for spotting celiac disease in adults who present abdominal symptoms in primary care or similar settings.
    To obtain initial data, the team search MEDLINE (from January 1966  through December 2009, and EMBASE from January 1947 through December 2009. They also conducted a physical search of references for additional relevant studies.
    The team chose cohort or nested case-control diagnostic studies which included adults presenting non-acute abdominal symptoms, which featured celiac disease prevalence of 15% or less, and in which the tests included gastrointestinal symptoms or serum antibody screens.
    Two independent reviewers conducted studies tool and data extraction. They then calculated sensitivities and specificities for each study and computed pooled estimates using bivariate analysis where there was clinical and statistical homogeneity.
    In all, the team included sixteen studies encompassing 6085 cases in their review.
    Specificity, sensitivity, and confidence intervals for predicting celiac disease varied with abdominal symptoms.  For patients presenting with classic diarrhea, for example, predictive sensitivity ranged from 0.27 to 0.86, while specificity ranged from 0.21 to 0.86.
    Pool estimates for 8 studies on IgA antiendomysial antibodies were 0.90, with a 95% confidence interval [CI] (0.80-0.95) for sensitivity and 0.99, with a 95% CI (0.98-1.00) for specificity, with a positive likelihood ratio [LR] of 171 and negative LR of 0.11.
    Pool estimates for IgA antitissue transglutaminase antibodies (7 studies) were 0.89, with a 95% CI (0.82-0.94) and 0.98 at 95% CI (0.95-0.99), respectively, with a positive LR of 37.7 and negative LR of 0.11.
    IgA and IgG antigliadin antibodies showed variable results, especially for sensitivity, which ranged from 0.46-0.87 for IgA, and from 0.25-0.93 for IgG.
    One recent study using deamidated gliadin peptides showed good specificity (0.94), but the target population offered limited supporting evidence.
    For adults who present abdominal symptoms in primary care or other unscreened settings, IgA antitissue transglutaminase antibodies and IgA antiendomysial antibodies offer high sensitivity and specificity for diagnosing celiac disease.
    SOURCE:  JAMA. 2010;303(17):1738-1746. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.549


    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 01/11/2012 - In an effort to understand how delayed celiac disease diagnosis became the norm for most patients over the last few decades, a research team conducted a study to assess the issue. Their study also looked at how delayed diagnosis affects health-related quality of life (HRQoL) for those with celiac disease, and considered differences with respect to sex and age.
    For the study, the team collaborated with the Swedish Society for Coeliacs to send a questionnaire to 1,560 randomly-chosen members, divided equally by age and sex. A total of 1,031 members (66%) responded. The team first measured HRQoL using the EQ-5D descriptive system, then translated the results to quality-adjusted life year (QALY) scores.
    The team then compared the results against the results from a survey of the general population. There was some good news and some bad news.
    The good news is that, while the average QALY score during the year before treatment was 0.66, it improved after diagnosis and treatment to 0.86, which is  better than that the score of 0.79 for the general population.
    The bad news is that they found the average person with celiac disease faced a delay in diagnosis of 9.7 years from the first symptoms, and 5.8 years from the first doctor visit.
    The team concede that the delay has been reduced over time for some age groups, but contend that it still remains unacceptably long for large numbers of people.
    Untreated celiac disease results in poor HRQoL, which improves or exceeds that of  the general population if diagnosed and treated. Reducing the delay in diagnosing celiac disease will go a long way toward reducing the burden of celiac disease.
    To do so, they say it is necessary to raise awareness of celiac disease as a common health problem, and to intensify diagnosis practices. This may, the note, make mass-screening for celiac disease an desirable option in the future.
    Authors: Fredrik Norstrom, Lars Lindholm, Olof Sandstrom, Katrina Nordyke, Anneli Ivarsson
    Source:

    BMC Gastroenterology 2011, 11:118. doi:10.1186/1471-230X-11-118

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