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Should I Get My 3 Year Old Tested?

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I have a 3 (almost 4) year old daugher who has always been extremely thin. She currently only weighs 28 lbs and is considered underweight for her BMI. After I have had a friends child diagnosed with celiac disease and I learned more about it I a have been concerned for my daughter. I have taken her to the pediatrian who didn't seem concerned considering she has been extremely healthy and does not have diahrea. She left it up to me if I would want to go thru with the testing. I don't want to put my daughter through the testing if there is nothing to be concerned with.

She was a normal weight baby until 7months when she dropped from the 50th percentile to the 4th in weight (which also correlates with the time I begans solids).. She has remained at that curve every since. She isn't a big eater and sometimes it is a battle to get her to eat. Her bowel movements seem normal however they are always the same color, a light/yellow brown which I heard could be a sign. Do you think I should go through with the testing based on these symptoms alone? My daughter is very afraid of doctors and I don't want to add to her fear unless it is necessary!

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I would do it. The small price to pay for knowing is worth it. If your child has it, you will be preventing them from many, many health problems by putting them on the diet now, rather than letting them go for years undiagnosed. If your child doesn't have it, then at least you know.

Have them do the full Celiac blood panel and the DNA test. If she is negative for the gene, she probably won't ever have Celiac, which will ease your mind and prevent further testing (in the years to come).

The full panel includes:

Total IgA





Not every person has the same symptoms. You could line up a whole bunch of Celiacs, and they'll range from NO symptoms to debilitating symptoms, and everyone else falls somewhere in between, with a variety of symptoms.

The below is from two pages on www.celiacdiseasecenter.columbia.edu

Importance of timely diagnosis

The average length of time between onset of symptoms and the diagnosis of celiac disease has decreased from 9 years for patients diagnosed prior to 1990 to 4.4 years for patients who were diagnosed after 1993 [2]. Although this change likely reflects the advent of serologic tests and growing awareness of celiac disease, the persistent lag between symptoms and diagnosis leaves much room for improvement. Several studies have demonstrated that the diagnostic delay was physician related rather than delay in patients seeking health care [8-10]. Timely diagnosis of celiac disease has implications beyond the relief of symptoms in affected patients. Silent manifestations of celiac disease, including osteoporosis, iron and folate deficiency will be screened for and detected once diagnosis of celiac disease is established. The increased mortality in patients with celiac disease, largely due to non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, can be reduced by prompt diagnosis and strict adherence to a gluten-free diet [11]. Because the duration of gluten exposure corresponds with the risk of developing concomitant autoimmune disease [12] early diagnosis is obviously favored.

However, most patients with silent celiac disease have occult manifestations of the disease, including reduced bone density, iron or folate deficiency and associated autoimmune diseases that are frequently more clinically significant. Celiac disease results in an increased risk of the development of various malignancies including lymphoma at any site, not only the small intestine. There is also an increased mortality rate in celiac disease, exceeding that of the general population by a factor of 1.9 to 3.8. The increased mortality is mainly due to malignancies. The excess mortality is reduced after 1 to 5 years on a gluten free diet, demonstrating protection by the gluten-free diet.

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wow. you could be describing my son. normal stools (for the most part) i.e. no loose stools... seems healthy enough but he went from being a smallish boy (25th percentile) to dropping off the charts. noone seemed to be concerned but my mama senses were tingling. after talking to one doctor, she mentioned the posability of celiac. i started researching it and just decided to pull any sort of gluten from his diet... the testing options seemed nasty.

after 6 months of gluten free living (or the closest thing we can swing--dang if he didn't once find a donut in our bag while we were at the fair) he is finally back up to 10th percentile in weight and about 15th to 20th in height.

our current doc who agrees with the thought of celiac for dear henry said that there is no point in testing him currently as here in canada they don't tend to go forward with the biopsy until the bloodwork comes back pos. and he doesn't see any good in us glutening lil henry just for the bloodwork that may or may not come back pos. i don't know enough about the testing so i'm sure that someone else may have more insight as to what that all entails. all i know is that pulling any source from his diet was test enough for me. after only 3 mos, the difference was amazing!

trust your mama instincts. those are strong and are there for a reason. here's love and best wishes for your little one!

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