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Celiac Disease Rates up to Five Times Higher in Adults with Turner Syndrome

Celiac.com 03/13/2009 - A recent study confirms that celiac disease affects adults with Turner Syndrome at rates of up to 5%, compared to 1% for the general population.

A team of researchers recently set out to assess rates of celiac disease in adults with Turner Syndrome. Led by doctor A. Frost of the Department of Endocrinology at University College Hospital in London, UK, the research team included doctors M. Band, G. Conway.

The researchers enlisted 256 adults with clinically proven Turner Syndrome. Five turned out to have existing diagnosis of celiac disease. The team conducted IgA endomysium antibody (EMA) screening for celiac disease on the remaining 251 Turner Syndrome patients.  Eight patients (3.2%) showed positive EMA screens. Doctors offered those eight patients endoscopy with duodenal biopsy.

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Seven patients committed to duodenal biopsy, and all seven (2.8%) showed positive histological confirmation for celiac disease. Thus, the doctors reasonably estimate the rate of sub-clinical celiac disease to be between 2.8% and 3.2%. When the existing cases are factored in, the total population shows rates between 4.7% and 5.1%.

The team conducted human leukocyte antigen (HLA) typing in the existing celiac disease cases and new EMA-positive cases. Ten of those 13 patients submitted to HLA typing. Eight showed positive results for HLA-DQ2, one for HLA-DQ8, while one showed negative results for both HLA-DQ2 and HLA-DQ8.

The study demonstrates that celiac disease affects adults with Turner Syndrome at rates of up to 5 times those of the general population, and the results are consistent with previous data published in pediatric populations.

European Journal of Endocrinology. 2009 Feb 10

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