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jonascat

How Long Does It Take?

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Hello, I'm new here and have a bit of an odd situation-

My mother has been suffering from severe stomach pains for the last several months. For the past two weeks those pains have gotten much worse and she is alternating between constipation and abnormal bowel movements. Sometimes she passes undigested food.

She is refusing to go to a doctor and is convinced she has celiac disease. She is 61, and has had bouts of stomach issues most of her life. I'm helping her try a gluten free diet, but I am concerned that this is NOT celiac- that it is something even more serious. She has had multiple polyps removed from her lower bowel and they were listed as pre-cancerous. She is very stubborn, though, and I'm at a loss. If it really is celiac, how long until we see her symptoms start to resolve? We've only been gluten free about five days, but I'm impatient and so far we've seen no improvement. I've also read a lot about contamination here, and since this is a test run, she doesn't want to replace all of her baking equipment, kitchen equipment, etc.- so does only eating gluten free food invalidate this trial?

Worrying about her so much is really hard on me- I just want her well! If her symptoms continue after the time period that celiac would usually start to resolve, I feel I'll have more leverage to get her to see a doctor. I would be deeply thankful for any thoughts.

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"most" people start to see a change at the 2 week mark (of being gluten free) but it takes 2-24 months to be "healthy"

Your mother needs to be seen. I am as stubborn as she (if not more so) and it wasn't until I was regurgitating everything I ate would I finally go. (I probably could have saved some time and pain if I went a lot sooner.)

Best of luck to you both.

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Hello, I'm new here and have a bit of an odd situation-

My mother has been suffering from severe stomach pains for the last several months. For the past two weeks those pains have gotten much worse and she is alternating between constipation and abnormal bowel movements. Sometimes she passes undigested food.

She is refusing to go to a doctor and is convinced she has celiac disease. She is 61, and has had bouts of stomach issues most of her life. I'm helping her try a gluten free diet, but I am concerned that this is NOT celiac- that it is something even more serious. She has had multiple polyps removed from her lower bowel and they were listed as pre-cancerous. She is very stubborn, though, and I'm at a loss. If it really is celiac, how long until we see her symptoms start to resolve? We've only been gluten free about five days, but I'm impatient and so far we've seen no improvement. I've also read a lot about contamination here, and since this is a test run, she doesn't want to replace all of her baking equipment, kitchen equipment, etc.- so does only eating gluten free food invalidate this trial?

Worrying about her so much is really hard on me- I just want her well! If her symptoms continue after the time period that celiac would usually start to resolve, I feel I'll have more leverage to get her to see a doctor. I would be deeply thankful for any thoughts.

You sound very devoted. She is lucky to have you.

If your mother is convinced that she has Celiac the most simple route for you to take is a blood test. It is simple and it may resolve your doubt.

A test gluten free diet is invalid if it is not totally dedicated. It is not the amount of gluten that is consumed, but rather the slightest amount of gluten that can set off the reaction which caused the damage to the small intestines.

A dedicated gluten free diet for a months time may show some improvement if it is indeed celiac or an intolerance to gluten. It is often advised during this time to be diary light or to eliminate all together.

If you have other concerns, I would certainly advise you to seek medical attention for your mother.

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I know this is a Celiac board and the first thing we all think about is celiac disease and it's many symptoms, but this woman has had precancerous polyps removed and is now having symptoms of what could also be something way more dangerous than celiac disease. Get her to the doctor. Point out to her that yes, it very well may be celiac disease but with her history you need to be thourough. Certainly they will want to start with blood tests, make sure it includes a celiac disease screening.

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I know this is a Celiac board and the first thing we all think about is celiac disease and it's many symptoms, but this woman has had precancerous polyps removed and is now having symptoms of what could also be something way more dangerous than celiac disease. Get her to the doctor. Point out to her that yes, it very well may be celiac disease but with her history you need to be thourough. Certainly they will want to start with blood tests, make sure it includes a celiac disease screening.

The real problem is that she has had many bad doctors who were unresponsive or dismissive of her medical concerns. This has resulted in a general distrust of doctors. Her doctor who diagnosed the polyps told her she did not need another scope for five years- for someone who has been called a "polyp farm", this seems an unreasonably long period of time. She now feels that the doctors feel she is faking her symptoms and that going to see them too much will just make them even more dismissive. I know that she is NOT faking her symptoms, but I also understand her concern about the doctors, because I've been with her to many appointments and seen how they treat her. I've had doctors act the same way to me because I have a rare sleeping disorder. Even though I was diagnosed, doctors who have not heard of it act like I'm either making it up or just need to stick to a sleeping schedule and things will be fine.

Having said that- I completely agree that she MUST see a doctor. I have spoken to her about what people here said about the time frame that symptoms should start resolve, and she has agree that if she has not improved in another week she will make an appointment. Hopefully I can make her stick to that promise. I want to thank everyone who responded for helping me convince her!

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Guest j_mommy

It's tuff to get a loved one to go in if tehy don't want to! but hopefully she will go.

Just gettig rid of the gluten food won't be enough. Cross contamination is a huge issue!!!

Good Luck to you!

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Your mom is certainly lucky to have someone like you in her corner. I know what you're up against. My dad is the same way, but thankfully he is in relatively good health. When he needs to go in, I make the appointment and pick him up and take him. He's older (72) and a bit more compliant maybe than your mom.

Can you research good doctors in your area? Maybe a medical university is a possibility? Maybe if you give the area you live, you can get good references for trustworthy doctors. maybe if she won't go in for herself, maybe she'll do it for you and other loved ones who care about her. Rally help from other family members if you can. Good luck.

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