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gillijl

Help! My Daughter's Lab Results Are Confusing!

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Five years ago, my then 3 1/2 year old daughter's skin started breaking out very badly. It covered her stomach, the insides of her legs and the insides of her arms...sometimes her buttocks. We met repeatedly with a dermatologist and went through all kinds of antihistamines. They helped, but didn't eliminate the problem. I had to sleep with her to keep her from scratching herself raw. Her sheets were always dotted with blood.

Then, last year, her stomach started to bother her as well. She would feel very nauseous and was missing school, soccer, etc... Her pediatrician did some blood work and told me there was a 70% chance she was "allergic to wheat". Not knowing anything about wheat allergies or celiac, I started down the road of trying to eliminate wheat from her diet. After finally educating myself more about the difference between allergies and gluten intolerance, I decided we needed to find out if she had celiac disease.

Last week we went to an allergist. He knew nothing about celiac disease and we left more frustrated then ever. The one thing I did was to get a copy of last year's blood work. I found they had tested for tTg, IgG and IgA, none of which they bothered to explain in the slightest at the time. The tTg and IgA readings were normal, but her IgG result was out the roof (73). I guess this is where the pediatrician got the "70% chance of wheat allergy".

After reading up on those results, it looks like her blood work is inconclusive. My question is, who do I go to now? The pediatrician is obviously uneducated about what we're dealing with, and I know more than the allergist! Do I take her to a GI, even though I'm not sure if that's what she has? I should mention, her major complaint is her skin, but the areas she breaks out in are different than what I've read about for DH. It does improve drastically when she doesn't eat wheat for a few weeks....the hard part is keeping an 8-year old away from wheat!!!

Any advice would be GREATLY appreciated.

Thanks,

Jennifer

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my doctor said that of tTg, IgA, IgG, yes, tTg is more indicative of Celiac, but you only need one marker (IgG) to diagnose gluten sensitivity. I would also try a good naturopath if you can find one, that's who nailed it for me.

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We thought my dd was allergic to wheat because her biggest symptom was skin rashes. She also had tempermant changes, and constipation. We saw 3 dermatologist and an allergist. Some of the Dr's thought the rash was related to food, while others did not. She was 2 at the time and her blood work for celiac disease was inconclusive. Her anti-gliadin antibodies were extreamlly high which signaled to us and her ped. that an immune response was occuring in the body to gluten. I was tested a few months ago and I had a positive ttg and ema.

My dd has had dramatic results with a gluten-free diet. We also had her tested for IgE inhalants IgE & IgG food allergies/sensitivities. We avoid dairy, eggs and other foods but finding out her food issues has been a blessing!

I also did a food diary that helped a great deal when meeting with the Dr's. :)

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my doctor said that of tTg, IgA, IgG, yes, tTg is more indicative of Celiac, but you only need one marker (IgG) to diagnose gluten sensitivity. I would also try a good naturopath if you can find one, that's who nailed it for me.

This is very interesting to me. I only had high IgG, and so my doc said there was nothing wrong with me and I should take Immodium. I decided to try gluten-free anyway, because I was desperate to feel better without popping pills constantly. My initial reaction was awesome -- my stools were better than they'd been in years. I actually realized that I'd forgotten what normal was. But now, after a month on the diet, the D is back. I was starting to think that the doctors were right and I was just kidding myself with the gluten thing. But maybe I'm not crazy after all; maybe I just need to give things more time.

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Guest nini
This is very interesting to me. I only had high IgG, and so my doc said there was nothing wrong with me and I should take Immodium. I decided to try gluten-free anyway, because I was desperate to feel better without popping pills constantly. My initial reaction was awesome -- my stools were better than they'd been in years. I actually realized that I'd forgotten what normal was. But now, after a month on the diet, the D is back. I was starting to think that the doctors were right and I was just kidding myself with the gluten thing. But maybe I'm not crazy after all; maybe I just need to give things more time.

yep, one marker is sufficient to indicate that gluten is a problem... any dr. that says otherwise is operating on outdated information. If you have to take Immodium there IS something wrong with you. For years though I thought that it was normal to have constant D, and that everyone took Immodium all the time. Give yourself a lot longer than a month and make sure that everything is gluten free including makeup and shampoos and lotions etc... It took me a good 6 months to really see a major improvement in the D... and now almost 3 years into it, I still have occassional issues and constant muscle pain and fatigue... You aren't crazy. Listen to your body. It may be that you need to eliminate more than gluten until you get the D under control. Dairy and Soy would be the first things to look at...

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If you have to take Immodium there IS something wrong with you.

I completely agree with this! I have never actually taken Immodium. At first, I always felt that if my body was having D, it was trying to flush something out, and it was a reasonable response to something and I should let it run its course. It was only when it became constant that I got worried. The doctor thought it was really strange that I wouldn't be comfortable just taking Immodium every day. :blink:

You have no idea how reassured I am that my high IgG does mean something. Do you have an article or reference for the claim that one elevated test means gluten sensitivity at least? My mother is on my case to go back on gluten for EMA tests and endoscopy, but I'm really reluctant. Even with the return of the D, I don't feel as bad as I did when I still ate gluten. The doctors she works with tell her I should have this done, but it sounds like they are outdated. The only reason they are willing to believe that I have any issue with gluten is because of my dietary response...they think the IgG alone means nothing.

I will stick with it. I have checked all makeup, etc., I think, but you have inspired me to do a double check! And I think in general, I need to take my diet back to simpler things and slowly add things back in once I get it under control.

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My son had the same rash. His dermatologist, not being able to treat it with meds, biopsied the rash and sent the biopsy to a lab. His results indicated Dermatitis Herpetaformis, the rash that indicates gluten intolerance. A gluten free diet will clear it up eventually but it can take some time. Keep pushing the doctors to test, using a biopsy. This article is very useful to help educate people about celiac (even the doctors). Celiac has been under diagnosed in the US for many years. http://consensus.nih.gov/2004/2004CeliacDisease118html.htm

Hope this helps.

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My son had the same rash. His dermatologist, not being able to treat it with meds, biopsied the rash and sent the biopsy to a lab. His results indicated Dermatitis Herpetaformis, the rash that indicates gluten intolerance. A gluten free diet will clear it up eventually but it can take some time. Keep pushing the doctors to test, using a biopsy. This article is very useful to help educate people about celiac (even the doctors). Celiac has been under diagnosed in the US for many years. http://consensus.nih.gov/2004/2004CeliacDisease118html.htm

Hope this helps.

Thanks to all of you for your responses. I appreciate all the information. I would be really interested to hear more about your son's rash. Was it hive-like? Hers is normally on her stomach, and the insides of her thighs. When it gets really bad, it's up her neck and on the insides of her forearms as well. Since the rash is normally her only symptom, I think the dermatologist is probably the best path forward for us right now. Plus, I like our dermatologist and I think she would be the easiest to work with.

Thanks again!

Jennifer

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