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Blood Work Questions

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I'm new to the forums. I've been having stomach problems for as long as I can remember. In 2005 I had my 1st colonoscopy due to bleeding. I was diagnosised with colitis. I was put on Asacol. I went back 6 months later and they did an endoscopy and a colonscopy. In the endscopy they found some damage to my small intestines and the colonscopy showed signs of crohns. I went back recently for another colonscopy and had more bloodwork done. My doctor keeps testing me for celiac. After this current colonscopy I was told I am IGA deficent (not really sure what that means) and that my large intestine is now showing signs of scaring. I went and had another panel of blood work done checking my TTG and my IGG.

If someone could explain waht exactly this means I'd be really greatful.


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If damage was found in the intestines with the endoscopy then chances are, it is celiac. Crohn's usually only affects the lower portions of the GI tract from what I understand. It is not uncommon for people to have IgA deficiency with celiac. Many labs only check the TTg (tissue transglutaminase) for IgA as an initial screen. If suspicion for celiac is still high, they will perform the TTg IgG level after determining if a person is total IgA deficient.

Due to your IgA deficiency, the doctor is mostly checking to see if you have antibodies to TTg by using the IgG class of antibodies. He may also be checking your total IgG level to be sure you are producing enough of those to begin with.

Since the antibodies correlate to the amount of damage in your intestines, I would think that the TtG IgG should come back positive in your case, since you have already had a positive biopsy, however, keep in mind that some people never produce the routine celiac antibodies at all. There have been studies where even people with total villous atrophy test negative to the antibodies! Only 77% show antibodies and roughly 29% of people with partial villous atrophy had positive antibody tests.

The endoscopy results still remain the "gold standard" of diagnosing celiac disease. Since you have already had a positive biopsy, and have had blood work drawn, you may want to immediately embark on a gluten free diet.

There are links on this board regarding the studies I referred to, sorry, I can't remember the links. If you search for seronegative celiac you will find more information

I hope this helps. Welcome to the boards, and Good Luck!

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