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Am I going crazy after Celiac disease confirmed?

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Hi all

I am Kathy, 47 in Michigan. Celiac disease is confirmed within the last 2 months both via the bloodwork and endoscopy/colonoscopy. After the Endoscopy, I had severe stomach pains so the GI doc ordered a capsule endoscopy which I had Friday 3/31/17. The prep/cleanse is similar to that of the colonoscopy but less intense. Anyway, each time, a day or two after the prep I went into severe anxiety and depression. I have this anyway but it's way worse. I went to ER the other day to rule out anything physiological and they couldn''t find anything from bloodwork, ekg, etc. so they sent me to a psychiatric network. From there I will be going through intensive crisis outpatient counseling. I don't feel well. I feel uneasy, anxious, tired, sad with dark negative thoughts. WTF??????  I have been gluten free for about 6 weeks. This morning I had an "episode".  Woke up normal, drank 2 cups coffee. Ate a few hours later; gluten-free oatmeal with brown sugar, almond milk, gluten-free bread with peanut butter. Within an hour later I began heart palps, thumping heart, and had diarrhea. Of course my anxiety kicked in too. I had to take a Clonopin to calm down. Please write if anyone has a similar experience. TYIA

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Welcome to the forum Kathouse! :)

I gotta tell you that 6 weeks is early on in the recovery from celiac disease damage to our guts.  It can take quite a few months or years to get back to normalcy.  But that doesn't mean you won't have improvements along the way.

You may have a problem with oats.  Some 10% or so of celiacs react to oats like they do wheat, rye and barley.  So it's good to skip all oats for 6 months or so and then try  them.

Our guts make more serotonin than our brains.  So the gut can potentially have some rather unexpected affects on mood.  Plus there are lots of nerves in the gut as it is a complex organ.

The best way to start the gluten-free diet is to skip 95% of the processed foods and eat whole meats, veggies, nuts, eggs.  No dairy no carbs, no sugary foods.  Also it can help to take some probiotics.  Sometimes digestive enzymes can be helpful.

A good multivitamin may help also.

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Thanks GFinDC!

I put a call in to the GI's nurse. She was ambilvalent about it. I felt like yelling, "Hey b****, I'm going outta my mind here, WTF?" I will try to skip oats for a while...but the sudden heart palps, pulse increase and diarrhea is strange and anxiety inducing. I HATE this right now. Good thing I'm on Spring Break and not working. 


So for now I am eating whole foods mostly, for example, making gluten-free crockpot chicken and dumplings. Also eating fruits and vegies, lots of 'em. And I have a good probiotic.


Thanks again

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If this happened both times a day or two after the prep and procedure I am wondering if you could have been reacting to something either in the prep or in a medication that you were given. Do mention this to your doctor if you should need another scope in the future.

You are very early into healing and the celiac lifestyle. Be sure to read the Newbie 101 thread at the top of the Coping section. Unfortunately there is a lot we have to be careful of to avoid cross contamination and there is a lot of info there to help you learn what you need to do to keep from being glutened.

Do drop the oats for now. Wait until you are well healed before you add them back.  It is a good idea to also drop dairy. When you add it back in start with hard cheeses like cheddar and yogurt.

It takes time to heal try to be patient with yourself. It's a big adjustment but it is so worth it to get your health back.

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Your post really caught my attention. I have had anxiety all of my life. My earliest memories are of anxious (but normal to every average child) childhood events. I know anxiety. This is a life changing diagnosis, it's no surprise your anxiety would be off the charts! And you had a procedure done, with medications you aren't used to. All new and all anxiety provoking. You could also be reacting to the oats and/or the medications that were used during your endoscopy as a previous poster said. AND you are just starting to heal. AND you are still adjusting to the new way of life, learning how to eat gluten-free and learning about Celiac disease. That is stressful! I would be surprised if even an average person who didn't have previous anxiety wasn't really affected by all of this. I have read many times on this board that many people have new neurological symptoms show up that go away as they heal. I can't say for sure but I think since you have had issues with anxiety before, this is all caused by anxiety. It doesn't make it any less miserable, but it might be comforting to know you are ok (esp after the normal bloodwork that came back from the ER visit). I know a lot of people with anxiety and its very common to have our anxiety symptoms change as soon as we figure out what they are. Like maybe you would feel dizzy, and you figured out that only happens when you are feeling anxious. Then, of course, our brains are over-imaginative, so a new symptom appears. Now you have ringing in your ears. Anxiety says its a brain tumour! It's exhausting. Hopefully, this has helped. I am trying to put a positive spin on the Celiac diagnosis. I am now forced to eat healthier. My body will be healthier! I'm hoping my anxiety and Bipolar symptoms will be reduced, or maybe even GO AWAY! I know soon I will have more energy. The testing and shock of the diagnosis is over, time to get a move on and get this taken care of so I can start feeling better. HUGS to you.

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Ravenwoodglass: The most recent intense anxiety/depression/can't get out of bed episode happened the day after the prep for the capsule endoscopy. I called the GI doc and he said it is common for mental health issues to be exacerbated by Celiac and to follow up with both my PCP and my Psychiatrist. He had not yet read the capsule study so I'm waiting to hear on that.

I am reacting to foods differently at times. I usually drink white wine with no problem. Last night I had a glass before dinner and got all flushed skin from neck to scalp, hot and itchy. Any other night no problems. Ugh!!  I am increasingly sensitive to salt too--just a dash too much and I'm up in the middle of the night.  Made gluten-free chicken & dumplings in the crockpot for dinner. The dumplings were gross--will need to modify that recipe from Pinterest!! 

Washingtonmama: Anxiety is a b****!!! I have been more sad and crying easily, focusing on negative things both past and present. I'm thinking, "Oh my God, get over it! Just snap out of it and stop this s*** now!" It doesn't work. It's beyond my control. All of this has been since I cut out Gluten. I will be patient and wait for my body to adjust. In the meantime I am forcing myself to get out and do things rather than hanging around the house and obsessing about Gluten stuff online.

Today I have an ultrasound to look for ovarian cysts and labs including hormonal and a1c requested by my obgyn. I may be all jacked up inside there too, or starting Menopause. (cries inside).

Thanks for all the replies and input so far. It helps.


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Hello Everyone, Hope this finds you well. I'm wondering if anyone knows of a compassionate and caring Doctor may it be Functional or Medical etc. in the Vancouver area? I have contacted the Celiac groups, however they are not allowed to release names. Thank you kindly in advance for your time. Happy Healing.  
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