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Dgp-Iga Positive After Being Almost Entirely Gluten Free

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I'm new to this site, but have been reading lots in the past few weeks since getting some bloods back. I have hashimotos, except my hormone levels are normal these days, my antibodies used to be off the chart. Because of this, I went gluten free and my antibodies have come down - still elevated but in the moderate high level, I believe. Anyway, I've not eaten gluten knowingly for 2 years. I had a range of bloods done recently by a doctor I like (& am sad to have moved away from!). Of all the celiac related tests I had done most were negative. But my DGP IgA was positive.

My Q's - can you get false positives? 
           - can people without celiac disease get positive DGP IgA results and, if so, what can it mean potentially?

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I have Hashi's. At the time of my diagnosis (anemia was my only symptom besides having Hashi's), only the DGP IGA was positive on my celiac blood test panel. The rest were negative. Biopsy samples obtained through an endoscopy revealed moderate to severe damage confirming celiac disease.

My thyroid antibodies have come down since I have gone gluten free. My thyroid is no longer enlarged or has nodules. I have not been re-tested for celiac disease as I am pretty sure I have been diet compliant since my husband has been gluten free for 14 years. Plus, my anemia resolved and I am storing iron.

You still might be getting gluten into your diet (cross contamination, medications, shampoos, lotions, toasters, etc.). Try reading our Newbie 101 section under "Coping" for tips.

You might consider asking for an intestinal biopsy (endoscopy) which is still considered the gold standard for a final diagnosis. You would need to be eating gluten for a month or so (need to research that advice) before doing so.

Besides your thyroid improving, have you noticed any other little symptoms improve with the gluten-free diet?

I think you have a strong chance of having celiac disease. I wish you well.

Non-functioning Gall bladder Removal Surgery 2005

Diagnosed via Blood Test and Endoscopy: March 2013

Hashimoto's Thyroiditis -- Stable 2014

Anemia -- Resolved

Fractures (vertebrae): June 2013

Osteopenia/osteoporosis -- June 2013

Allergies and Food Intolerances

Diabetes -- January 2014

Celiac.com - Celiac Disease Board Moderator

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As far as I know (and I could be wrong), Hashimoto's id not a cause for an elevated deaminated gliadin peptides (DGP) test.  Hashi's can cause slightly elevated tTG IgA results, but the DGP tests is more about a reaction to gliadin (gluten).  I don't think Hashi's wil cause a false positive.


My guess is that you have celiac disease and have not been as careful as a celiac needs to be, which is more strict than someone who is gluten-free for other health reasons often is.  The DGP tests are often used to monitor dietary compliance because they tend to change fairly rapidly in response to dietary (gluten-free) change compared to the tTG tests which can take many months to years to normalize.  My guess is that you are somehow being exposed to tiny amounts of gluten.


Are you eating in shared kitchens?  The crumbs in toasters, butter, peanut butter and jam are more than enough to make a celiac ill.  So is the gluten in soy sauce, worchestershire sauce, and some soups and spreads or mustards.  The gluten stuck in the scratched teflon coating of frying pans, or the scratches of the plastic surfaces of a colander, spatula or cutting board could also make a celiac sick.  Could that be it?  :(


Best wishes to you.  I know dealing with Hashi's and celiac disease can be a hassle.  


"Acceptance is the key to happiness."

ITP - 1993

Celiac - June, 2012

Hypothyroid - August, 2012


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