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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   04/07/2018

      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 Celiac.com's FREE weekly eNewsletter   What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease?  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 What if my doctor won't listen to me? An Open Letter to Skeptical Health Care Practitioners Gluten-Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes
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    CELIAC DIAGNOSIS WITHOUT BIOPSY CAN BE USEFUL IN SOME CASES


    Jefferson Adams

    Celiac.com 05/19/2016 - Using a prospective cohort study, a team of researchers recently set out to assess the outcomes of the latest celiac diagnosis guidelines from the European Society of Paediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition (ESPGHAN) and British Society of Paediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition (BSPGHAN).


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    The research team included Elisa Benelli, Valentina Carrato, Stefano Martelossi, Luca Ronfani, Tarcisio Not, and Alessandro Ventura. They are variously affiliated with the Department of Medical, Surgical and Health Sciences, University of Trieste in Trieste, Italy, and the Institute for Maternal and Child Health IRCCS 'Burlo Garofolo' in Trieste, Italy. The study was conducted at the Institute for Maternal and Child Health IRCCS Burlo Garofolo in Trieste, Italy.

    For the study, the team prospectively enrolled children diagnosed with celiac disease without a duodenal biopsy (group 1), following the last ESPGHAN and BSPGHAN guidelines, and children diagnosed with a duodenal biopsy, matched for sex, age and year of diagnosis (group 2). All of this was done over a 3-year period. The team made sure all patients were on a gluten-free diet (gluten-free diet) and then followed them for clinical conditions and laboratory testing at 6 months every year since diagnosis. The average follow up period was just under two years.

    Their analysis looked at resolution of symptoms, body mass index, levels of hemoglobin and anti-transglutaminase IgA, adherence to a gluten-free diet, quality of life, and supplementary post-diagnosis medical consultations. Out of 468 patients, the team found 51 patients (11%) who were diagnosed without a duodenal biopsy (group 1; median age 2.1 years), and matched those patients to 92 patients diagnosed with a biopsy (group 2; median age 2.4 years).

    At the end of follow-up the two groups showed statistically comparable clinical and nutritional status, anti-transglutaminase IgA antibody levels, quality of life, adherence to a gluten-free diet, and number of supplementary medical consultations.

    This study indicates that celiac disease can be reliably diagnosed without a duodenal biopsy in approximately 11% of cases.

    At least during a medium-term follow-up, this approach has no negative consequences relating to clinical remission, adherence to diet, and quality of life of children with celiac disease.

    Source:


    Image Caption: How useful is celiac disease without biopsy? Photo: CC--Military Health
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    Guest Jeff Kelly

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    Gee, I thought I was one of the one percent and now to learn I am one of the eleven percent?? ( Demoted!!)

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  • Related Articles

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 03/09/2016 - Can doctors reliably diagnose celiac disease in kids without duodenal biopsy?
    A team of researchers recently set out to see if they could use predictive values of transglutaminase (tTG) antibodies to diagnose celiac disease in kids, without performing duodenal biopsy.
    The research team included MA Aldaghi, SM Dehghani, and M Haghighat, of the Department of Pediatrics at Shiraz University of Medical Sciences in Shiraz, Iran.
    For their study, the team selected patients with likely celiac disease, who had been referred to a gastrointestinal clinic. The team first conducted physical examinations of the patients and performed tissue transglutaminase-immunoglobulin A (tTG-IgA) tests. For patients with serological titers higher than 18 IU/mL, the team performed upper endoscopy.
    The team assessed a total of 121 children, 69 female and 52 male, averaging 8.4 years of age. They found a significant association between blood tests and biopsy results; in other words, subjects with high antibody levels had more positive pathologic results for celiac disease, compared to others (P < 0.001).
    They achieved maximum sensitivity and maximum specificity of about 65% with a serological titer of 81.95 IU/ml. The calculated accuracy was lower in comparison with other studies.
    The team found lower antibody levels in patients with failure to gain weight and higher antibody levels in diabetic patients.
    In this study, a single blood test (tTg-IgA test) was not sufficient for researchers to reliably diagnose celiac disease without duodenal biopsy.
    Source:
    Iran J Pediatr. 2016 Feb;26(1):e3615. doi: 10.5812/ijp.3615. Epub 2016 Jan 30.

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 03/07/2016 - Even though doctors know a lot more about celiac disease than they did just a few years ago, and even though they are learning more all the time, there are still very few detailed clinical descriptions of large groups of celiac patients.
    Recently, a team of researchers reviewed a large Dutch cohort of celiac patients to create an overview that focused on symptom presentation, co-occurrence of immune mediated diseases and malignancies.
    The research team included M Spijkerman, IL Tan, JJ Kolkman, S Withoff, C Wijmenga, MC Visschedijk, and RK Weersma. They are variously associated with the Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, University of Groningen and University Medical Center Groningen, Groningen; the Department of Genetics, University of Groningen and University Medical Center Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands, and with the Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Medisch Spectrum Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands.
    To create their overview, the team performed a retrospective study in a Dutch university and a non-university medical hospital that included only patients with biopsy proven (≥Marsh type 2 classification) celiac disease.
    The team selected 412 patients from 9,468 small-bowel biopsy pathology reports and financial codes. About a third of the group showed classical celiac symptoms, including diarrhea (37.4%), fatigue (35.0%), weight loss (31.6%), abdominal pain (33.3%).
    Around 10% showed atypical symptoms, including constipation (10.4%) and reflux (12.4%), while nearly 12% were diagnosed without any reported symptoms.
    About one in four patients also had immune-mediated diseases, most commonly type 1 diabetes mellitus (4.9%), microscopic colitis (4.9%), and immune mediated-thyroid disease (4.1%). Celiac patients who also had immune-mediated diseases were significantly older at the time of diagnosis, compared to those without (P=0.002).
    A total of 53 patients (12.9%) had malignancies, eight of whom suffered from Enteropathy Associated T-cell Lymphomas.
    This is the first Dutch study to describe a group of celiac patients in such detail. The study highlights the wide range of clinical variables in celiac disease, as well as the importance of screening for celiac patients for concomitant diseases.
    Source:
    Dig Liver Dis. 2016 Jan 18. pii: S1590-8658(15)30028-1. doi: 10.1016/j.dld.2016.01.006. [Epub ahead of print]

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/06/2016 - Ultra-short celiac disease (USCD) is a type of celiac disease in which villous atrophy limited to the patient's duodenal bulb.
    The clinical effects of of ultra-short celiac disease, or gluten-sensitive enteropathy with villous atrophy limited to the duodenal bulb (D1) have not been delineated in adults with celiac disease.
    A team of researchers recently evaluated the sensitivity of D1 biopsy analysis in celiac disease detection, the number and sites of biopsies required to detect USCD, which is villous atrophy limited to the duodenal bulb, and the clinical characteristics of USCD.
    The researchers included Peter D. Mooney, Matthew Kurien, Kate E. Evans, Eleanor Rosario, Simon S. Cross, Patricia Vergani, Marios Hadjivassiliou, Joseph A. Murray, and David S. Sanders. They are variously affiliated with the University of Sheffield, UK, and with the Departments of Gastroenterology, Neurology and Histopathology at Royal Hallamshire Hospital, Sheffield, UK.
    For their evaluation, they conducted a prospective study of 854 women and 524 men, averaging about 50 years of age, who underwent endoscopy at a tertiary medical center in the United Kingdom from 2008 through 2014. The team collected routine duodenal biopsies from D1 and D2.
    They collected quadrantic D1 biopsies from 171 consecutive patients with a high suspicion of celiac disease. This group averaged about age 46 years of age, and was 64% female.
    Using biopsy analysis, they then compared the clinical data from patients diagnosed with USCD against data from patients with conventional celiac disease damage beyond D1, and against data from a control group of patients without celiac disease. They then compared numbers of intraepithelial lymphocytes (IELs) and immune phenotypes between D1 vs D2 in patients with celiac disease.
    Of the 1378 patients assessed, they diagnosed 268, nearly 20%, with celiac disease; 9.7% of these patients had villous atrophy confined to D1 (USCD, P<.0001). By collecting just a single additional biopsy from any D1 site, the sensitivity of celiac disease detection increased by about 10% (P<.0001).
    Overall, patients with USCD were younger, had lower levels of tissue transglutaminase antibody, and suffered less frequently with diarrhea than patients with conventional celiac disease. Both USCD and control patients had far fewer cases ferritin deficiency or folate deficiency than patients with conventional celiac disease. Patients with celiac disease averaged 50 IELs/100 enterocytes in D1, and 48 IELs/100 enterocytes in D2.
    The phenotype of IELs from patients with D1 celiac disease was no different from those of patients with D2 celiac disease.
    This study shows that the collection of a single additional biopsy from any site in the D1 intestine increases the sensitivity of detection for celiac disease by about 10%.
    Patients with USCD may have early-stage or limited celiac disease, with a mild clinical phenotype, and fewer nutritional deficiencies. This is an important thing to keep in mind when diagnosing and treating such cases.
    Source:
    Gastrojournal.org. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1053/j.gastro.2016.01.029

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 05/02/2016 - Even with endoscopies, physicians can still miss some cases of celiac disease. A team of researchers recently set out to determine if I-Scan, or virtual chromo-endoscopy, could improve sensitivity of endoscopy to detect markers of villous atrophy in patients with celiac disease.
    The research team included Hugo A. Penny, Peter D. Mooney, Mitchell Burden, Nisha Patel, Alexander J. Johnston, Simon H. Wong, Julian Teare, and David S. Sanders. They are variously affiliated with Royal Hallamshire Hospital in Sheffield, UK, and with St Mary's Hospital in London, UK.
    For their study, the team assessed patients from two UK hospitals in 3 groups.
    For Group 1, they used standard high definition, white light endoscopy (WLE). For Group 2, they used WLE plus I-Scan. For Group 3, they used a non-high definition control group. They recruited an initial group of 758 patients. That group was 62% female, with an average age of 52. They recorded the presence of endoscopic markers, and took at least 4 duodenal biopsies from all patients. They also made concurrent blood tests, and compared observations with patient histology. The patient breakdown was as follows: Group 1: 230; Group 2: 228; Group 3: 300.
    The team made 135 new diagnoses of celiac disease, with 21 cases in Group 1, 24 in Group 2, and 89 in Group 3. The sensitivity for detection of endoscopic markers of villous atrophy was significantly higher in both Group 1 at 85.7% and Group 2 at 75%, compared to non-high definition controls at 41.6%.
    There was no significant difference between high definition only and I-Scan groups.
    In non-high definition endoscopy, they found that missed diagnosis was mainly due to lesser degrees of villous atrophy (p = 0.019) and low tTG titre (p = 0.007).
    From their data, the team concluded that high definition endoscopy with or without I-Scan increases the detection of celiac disease during routine endoscopy.
    Source:
    Digestive and Liver Disease.

  • Recent Articles

    Connie Sarros
    Celiac.com 04/21/2018 - Dear Friends and Readers,
    I have been writing articles for Scott Adams since the 2002 Summer Issue of the Scott-Free Press. The Scott-Free Press evolved into the Journal of Gluten Sensitivity. I felt honored when Scott asked me ten years ago to contribute to his quarterly journal and it's been a privilege to write articles for his publication ever since.
    Due to personal health reasons and restrictions, I find that I need to retire. My husband and I can no longer travel the country speaking at conferences and to support groups (which we dearly loved to do) nor can I commit to writing more books, articles, or menus. Consequently, I will no longer be contributing articles to the Journal of Gluten Sensitivity. 
    My following books will still be available at Amazon.com:
    Gluten-free Cooking for Dummies Student's Vegetarian Cookbook for Dummies Wheat-free Gluten-free Dessert Cookbook Wheat-free Gluten-free Reduced Calorie Cookbook Wheat-free Gluten-free Cookbook for Kids and Busy Adults (revised version) My first book was published in 1996. My journey since then has been incredible. I have met so many in the celiac community and I feel blessed to be able to call you friends. Many of you have told me that I helped to change your life – let me assure you that your kind words, your phone calls, your thoughtful notes, and your feedback throughout the years have had a vital impact on my life, too. Thank you for all of your support through these years.

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/20/2018 - A digital media company and a label data company are teaming up to help major manufacturers target, reach and convert their desired shoppers based on dietary needs, such as gluten-free diet. The deal could bring synergy in emerging markets such as the gluten-free and allergen-free markets, which represent major growth sectors in the global food industry. 
    Under the deal, personalized digital media company Catalina will be joining forces with Label Insight. Catalina uses consumer purchases data to target shoppers on a personal base, while Label Insight works with major companies like Kellogg, Betty Crocker, and Pepsi to provide insight on food label data to government, retailers, manufacturers and app developers.
    "Brands with very specific product benefits, gluten-free for example, require precise targeting to efficiently reach and convert their desired shoppers,” says Todd Morris, President of Catalina's Go-to-Market organization, adding that “Catalina offers the only purchase-based targeting solution with this capability.” 
    Label Insight’s clients include food and beverage giants such as Unilever, Ben & Jerry's, Lipton and Hellman’s. Label Insight technology has helped the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) build the sector’s very first scientifically accurate database of food ingredients, health attributes and claims.
    Morris says the joint partnership will allow Catalina to “enhance our dataset and further increase our ability to target shoppers who are currently buying - or have shown intent to buy - in these emerging categories,” including gluten-free, allergen-free, and other free-from foods.
    The deal will likely make for easier, more precise targeting of goods to consumers, and thus provide benefits for manufacturers and retailers looking to better serve their retail food customers, especially in specialty areas like gluten-free and allergen-free foods.
    Source:
    fdfworld.com

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/19/2018 - Previous genome and linkage studies indicate the existence of a new disease triggering mechanism that involves amino acid metabolism and nutrient sensing signaling pathways. In an effort to determine if amino acids might play a role in the development of celiac disease, a team of researchers recently set out to investigate if plasma amino acid levels differed among children with celiac disease compared with a control group.
     
    The research team included Åsa Torinsson Naluai, Ladan Saadat Vafa, Audur H. Gudjonsdottir, Henrik Arnell, Lars Browaldh, and Daniel Agardh. They are variously affiliated with the Institute of Biomedicine, Department of Microbiology & Immunology, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden; the Institute of Clinical Sciences, Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden; the Department of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, Karolinska University Hospital and Division of Pediatrics, CLINTEC, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden; the Department of Clinical Science and Education, Karolinska Institute, Sodersjukhuset, Stockholm, Sweden; the Department of Mathematical Sciences, Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden; the Diabetes & Celiac Disease Unit, Department of Clinical Sciences, Lund University, Malmö, Sweden; and with the Nathan S Kline Institute in the U.S.A.
    First, the team used liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS) to analyze amino acid levels in fasting plasma samples from 141 children with celiac disease and 129 non-celiac disease controls. They then crafted a general linear model using age and experimental effects as covariates to compare amino acid levels between children with celiac disease and non-celiac control subjects.
    Compared with the control group, seven out of twenty-three children with celiac disease showed elevated levels of the the following amino acids: tryptophan; taurine; glutamic acid; proline; ornithine; alanine; and methionine.
    The significance of the individual amino acids do not survive multiple correction, however, multivariate analyses of the amino acid profile showed significantly altered amino acid levels in children with celiac disease overall and after correction for age, sex and experimental effects.
    This study shows that amino acids can influence inflammation and may play a role in the development of celiac disease.
    Source:
    PLoS One. 2018; 13(3): e0193764. doi: & 10.1371/journal.pone.0193764

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/18/2018 - To the relief of many bewildered passengers and crew, no more comfort turkeys, geese, possums or other questionable pets will be flying on Delta or United without meeting the airlines' strict new requirements for service animals.
    If you’ve flown anywhere lately, you may have seen them. People flying with their designated “emotional support” animals. We’re not talking genuine service animals, like seeing eye dogs, or hearing ear dogs, or even the Belgian Malinois that alerts its owner when there is gluten in food that may trigger her celiac disease.
    Now, to be honest, some of those animals in question do perform a genuine service for those who need emotional support dogs, like veterans with PTSD.
    However, many of these animals are not service animals at all. Many of these animals perform no actual service to their owners, and are nothing more than thinly disguised pets. Many lack proper training, and some have caused serious problems for the airlines and for other passengers.
    Now the major airlines are taking note and introducing stringent requirements for service animals.
    Delta was the first to strike. As reported by the New York Times on January 19: “Effective March 1, Delta, the second largest US airline by passenger traffic, said it will require passengers seeking to fly with pets to present additional documents outlining the passenger’s need for the animal and proof of its training and vaccinations, 48 hours prior to the flight.… This comes in response to what the carrier said was a 150 percent increase in service and support animals — pets, often dogs, that accompany people with disabilities — carried onboard since 2015.… Delta said that it flies some 700 service animals a day. Among them, customers have attempted to fly with comfort turkeys, gliding possums, snakes, spiders, and other unusual pets.”
    Fresh from an unsavory incident with an “emotional support” peacock incident, United Airlines has followed Delta’s lead and set stricter rules for emotional support animals. United’s rules also took effect March 1, 2018.
    So, to the relief of many bewildered passengers and crew, no more comfort turkeys, geese, possums or other questionable pets will be flying on Delta or United without meeting the airlines' strict new requirements for service and emotional support animals.
    Source:
    cnbc.com

    admin
    WHAT IS CELIAC DISEASE?
    Celiac disease is an autoimmune condition that affects around 1% of the population. People with celiac disease suffer an autoimmune reaction when they consume wheat, rye or barley. The immune reaction is triggered by certain proteins in the wheat, rye, or barley, and, left untreated, causes damage to the small, finger-like structures, called villi, that line the gut. The damage occurs as shortening and villous flattening in the lamina propria and crypt regions of the intestines. The damage to these villi then leads to numerous other issues that commonly plague people with untreated celiac disease, including poor nutritional uptake, fatigue, and myriad other problems.
    Celiac disease mostly affects people of Northern European descent, but recent studies show that it also affects large numbers of people in Italy, China, Iran, India, and numerous other places thought to have few or no cases.
    Celiac disease is most often uncovered because people experience symptoms that lead them to get tests for antibodies to gluten. If these tests are positive, then the people usually get biopsy confirmation of their celiac disease. Once they adopt a gluten-free diet, they usually see gut healing, and major improvements in their symptoms. 
    CLASSIC CELIAC DISEASE SYMPTOMS
    Symptoms of celiac disease can range from the classic features, such as diarrhea, upset stomach, bloating, gas, weight loss, and malnutrition, among others.
    LESS OBVIOUS SYMPTOMS
    Celiac disease can often less obvious symptoms, such fatigue, vitamin and nutrient deficiencies, anemia, to name a few. Often, these symptoms are regarded as less obvious because they are not gastrointestinal in nature. You got that right, it is not uncommon for people with celiac disease to have few or no gastrointestinal symptoms. That makes spotting and connecting these seemingly unrelated and unclear celiac symptoms so important.
    NO SYMPTOMS
    Currently, most people diagnosed with celiac disease do not show symptoms, but are diagnosed on the basis of referral for elevated risk factors. 

    CELIAC DISEASE VS. GLUTEN INTOLERANCE
    Gluten intolerance is a generic term for people who have some sort of sensitivity to gluten. These people may or may not have celiac disease. Researchers generally agree that there is a condition called non-celiac gluten sensitivity. That term has largely replaced the term gluten-intolerance. What’s the difference between celiac disease and non-celiac gluten-sensitivity? 
    CELIAC DISEASE VS. NON-CELIAC GLUTEN SENSITIVITY (NCGS)
    Gluten triggers symptoms and immune reactions in people with celiac disease. Gluten can also trigger symptoms in some people with NCGS, but the similarities largely end there.

    There are four main differences between celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity:
    No Hereditary Link in NCGS
    Researchers know for certain that genetic heredity plays a major role in celiac disease. If a first-degree relative has celiac disease, then you have a statistically higher risk of carrying genetic markers DQ2 and/or DQ8, and of developing celiac disease yourself. NCGS is not known to be hereditary. Some research has shown certain genetic associations, such as some NCGS patients, but there is no proof that NCGS is hereditary. No Connection with Celiac-related Disorders
    Unlike celiac disease, NCGS is so far not associated with malabsorption, nutritional deficiencies, or a higher risk of autoimmune disorders or intestinal malignancies. No Immunological or Serological Markers
    People with celiac disease nearly always test positive for antibodies to gluten proteins. Researchers have, as yet, identified no such antobodies or serologic markers for NCGS. That means that, unlike with celiac disease, there are no telltale screening tests that can point to NCGS. Absence of Celiac Disease or Wheat Allergy
    Doctors diagnose NCGS only by excluding both celiac disease, an IgE-mediated allergy to wheat, and by the noting ongoing adverse symptoms associated with gluten consumption. WHAT ABOUT IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME (IBS) AND IRRITABLE BOWEL DISEASE (IBD)?
    IBS and IBD are usually diagnosed in part by ruling out celiac disease. Many patients with irritable bowel syndrome are sensitive to gluten. Many experience celiac disease-like symptoms in reaction to wheat. However, patients with IBS generally show no gut damage, and do not test positive for antibodies to gliadin and other proteins as do people with celiac disease. Some IBS patients also suffer from NCGS.

    To add more confusion, many cases of IBS are, in fact, celiac disease in disguise.

    That said, people with IBS generally react to more than just wheat. People with NCGS generally react to wheat and not to other things, but that’s not always the case. Doctors generally try to rule out celiac disease before making a diagnosis of IBS or NCGS. 
    Crohn’s Disease and celiac disease share many common symptoms, though causes are different.  In Crohn’s disease, the immune system can cause disruption anywhere along the gastrointestinal tract, and a diagnosis of Crohn’s disease typically requires more diagnostic testing than does a celiac diagnosis.  
    Crohn’s treatment consists of changes to diet and possible surgery.  Up to 10% of Crohn's patients can have both of conditions, which suggests a genetic connection, and researchers continue to examine that connection.
    Is There a Connection Between Celiac Disease, Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity and Irritable Bowel Syndrome? Large Number of Irritable Bowel Syndrome Patients Sensitive To Gluten Some IBD Patients also Suffer from Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity Many Cases of IBS and Fibromyalgia Actually Celiac Disease in Disguise CELIAC DISEASE DIAGNOSIS
    Diagnosis of celiac disease can be difficult. 

    Perhaps because celiac disease presents clinically in such a variety of ways, proper diagnosis often takes years. A positive serological test for antibodies against tissue transglutaminase is considered a very strong diagnostic indicator, and a duodenal biopsy revealing villous atrophy is still considered by many to be the diagnostic gold standard. 
    But this idea is being questioned; some think the biopsy is unnecessary in the face of clear serological tests and obvious symptoms. Also, researchers are developing accurate and reliable ways to test for celiac disease even when patients are already avoiding wheat. In the past, patients needed to be consuming wheat to get an accurate test result. 
    Celiac disease can have numerous vague, or confusing symptoms that can make diagnosis difficult.  Celiac disease is commonly misdiagnosed by doctors. Read a Personal Story About Celiac Disease Diagnosis from the Founder of Celiac.com Currently, testing and biopsy still form the cornerstone of celiac diagnosis.
    TESTING
    There are several serologic (blood) tests available that screen for celiac disease antibodies, but the most commonly used is called a tTG-IgA test. If blood test results suggest celiac disease, your physician will recommend a biopsy of your small intestine to confirm the diagnosis.
    Testing is fairly simple and involves screening the patients blood for antigliadin (AGA) and endomysium antibodies (EmA), and/or doing a biopsy on the areas of the intestines mentioned above, which is still the standard for a formal diagnosis. Also, it is now possible to test people for celiac disease without making them concume wheat products.

    BIOPSY
    Until recently, biopsy confirmation of a positive gluten antibody test was the gold standard for celiac diagnosis. It still is, but things are changing fairly quickly. Children can now be accurately diagnosed for celiac disease without biopsy. Diagnosis based on level of TGA-IgA 10-fold or more the ULN, a positive result from the EMA tests in a second blood sample, and the presence of at least 1 symptom could avoid risks and costs of endoscopy for more than half the children with celiac disease worldwide.

    WHY A GLUTEN-FREE DIET?
    Currently the only effective, medically approved treatment for celiac disease is a strict gluten-free diet. Following a gluten-free diet relieves symptoms, promotes gut healing, and prevents nearly all celiac-related complications. 
    A gluten-free diet means avoiding all products that contain wheat, rye and barley, or any of their derivatives. This is a difficult task as there are many hidden sources of gluten found in the ingredients of many processed foods. Still, with effort, most people with celiac disease manage to make the transition. The vast majority of celiac disease patients who follow a gluten-free diet see symptom relief and experience gut healing within two years.
    For these reasons, a gluten-free diet remains the only effective, medically proven treatment for celiac disease.
    WHAT ABOUT ENZYMES, VACCINES, ETC.?
    There is currently no enzyme or vaccine that can replace a gluten-free diet for people with celiac disease.
    There are enzyme supplements currently available, such as AN-PEP, Latiglutetenase, GluteGuard, and KumaMax, which may help to mitigate accidental gluten ingestion by celiacs. KumaMax, has been shown to survive the stomach, and to break down gluten in the small intestine. Latiglutenase, formerly known as ALV003, is an enzyme therapy designed to be taken with meals. GluteGuard has been shown to significantly protect celiac patients from the serious symptoms they would normally experience after gluten ingestion. There are other enzymes, including those based on papaya enzymes.

    Additionally, there are many celiac disease drugs, enzymes, and therapies in various stages of development by pharmaceutical companies, including at least one vaccine that has received financial backing. At some point in the not too distant future there will likely be new treatments available for those who seek an alternative to a lifelong gluten-free diet. 

    For now though, there are no products on the market that can take the place of a gluten-free diet. Any enzyme or other treatment for celiac disease is intended to be used in conjunction with a gluten-free diet, not as a replacement.

    ASSOCIATED DISEASES
    The most common disorders associated with celiac disease are thyroid disease and Type 1 Diabetes, however, celiac disease is associated with many other conditions, including but not limited to the following autoimmune conditions:
    Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus: 2.4-16.4% Multiple Sclerosis (MS): 11% Hashimoto’s thyroiditis: 4-6% Autoimmune hepatitis: 6-15% Addison disease: 6% Arthritis: 1.5-7.5% Sjögren’s syndrome: 2-15% Idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy: 5.7% IgA Nephropathy (Berger’s Disease): 3.6% Other celiac co-morditities include:
    Crohn’s Disease; Inflammatory Bowel Disease Chronic Pancreatitis Down Syndrome Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Lupus Multiple Sclerosis Primary Biliary Cirrhosis Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis Psoriasis Rheumatoid Arthritis Scleroderma Turner Syndrome Ulcerative Colitis; Inflammatory Bowel Disease Williams Syndrome Cancers:
    Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (intestinal and extra-intestinal, T- and B-cell types) Small intestinal adenocarcinoma Esophageal carcinoma Papillary thyroid cancer Melanoma CELIAC DISEASE REFERENCES:
    Celiac Disease Center, Columbia University
    Gluten Intolerance Group
    National Institutes of Health
    U.S. National Library of Medicine
    Mayo Clinic
    University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center