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alemon4

Could This Be Celiac?

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Hello all, Thank you in advance for your help!! My son is 6 yrs old.  He has always had tummy issues, even as a baby had reflux.  For a couple years now he has started throwing up after eating sometimes.  He always feels better almost immediately after doing so. He has frequent (at least once a week) headaches and mouth sores.  Constantly complains of stomach hurting and has problems with constipation and diarreha (sp?).  My issue is he is not under weight or small height wise either.  In fact, he has always been on the higher end, 90th percentile.  He has issues with fine motor skills and last year was put on add meds.  I have mentioned it to my doctor before and we have tried a couple other thing to try to help however nothing has really helped.  The thing that has me the most confused it he doesnt throw up all the time.  He will get sick one week  and then he wont throw up again for 2-3 weeks . I am so confused however i know something is going on and i need to figure out what!!!  So do you think this could be celiac disease?  Any tips or advice??

Edited by alemon4

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It is possible that it is celiac. I remember a lot of stomach aches in my childhood, and eventually headaches too. Throughout my entire life, celiac symptoms have never been very regular/dependable - some weeks or years were good and others were bad. I too was over the 90th percentile for height and I'm assuming that is partially why my doctor never considered celiac disease as my problem.

 

It's a good idea to get the blood tests done when celiac disease is suspected. These are the most common:

  • tTG IgA and tTG IgG (anti-tissue transglutaminase)  -  the most common tests
  • DGP IgA and DGP IgG (deaminate gliadin peptides)  - newest test and the best for children
  • EMA IgA (endomysial antibodies)  - tends to detect more advanced celiac disease, similar to the tTG IgA
  • total serum IgA (immunoglobulin A)  - a control test. 5% of celiacs are low in IgA so their IgA based celiac disease tests (DGP IgA, tTG IgA) are falsely negative
  • AGA IgA and AGA IgG (anti-gliadin antibodies)  - an older and less reliable test

For these tests to be accurate your son needs to be eating gluten (1-2 slices of bread per day) for the 8-12 weeks prior to the test. Don't go gluten-free yet.  These tests are not fool proof and may miss between 5-25% of all celiacs so you want to get as many tests done as possible.

 

There is also the endoscopy biopsy, but I would start with blood tests.

 

Non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS) is also a possibility.  Those with NCGS have the same symptoms as a celiac but they don't have any intestinal damage; it's a different sort of immune response.  A positive response to the gluten-free diet (after a few months) would tell you it is NCGS - there are no tests for it at this time, although some doctors think the AGA tests may occasionally show NCGS.

 

Good luck with the testing!  :)

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