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Blunted Villi Question

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Hi all,

I am frustrated with doctors. I have been sick since I was a child, I'm now 49. My symptoms are: bloating, diarrhea, ataxia, neuropathy, blurred vision, joint pains, chronic sinus infections, osteopenia, fatigue, period of cognitive decline, on and off anemia, 2 possible TIA's., extreme muscle weakness, and other strange symptoms. I have been diagnosed with Undifferentiated Connective Tissue Disease, possible crohn's disease or MS, or Lupus. I have several doctors that follow my case, but I have never gotten a firm diagnosis.

I recently had another upper and lower scope. This is the first time I have had a biopsy of my small intestines. The results of my lower biopsy was some mild inflammation, rare diverticulosis, my upper biopsy showed blunting of the villi in my small intestine. I had a pill cam 3 years ago, that showed some ulcers, and that was when they said possible mild crohn's. Do you know if other disease cause blunting of the villi? My doctor ordered a celiac panel this week. They had ran this test on me 5 years ago, and it was neg. At the time I didn't know that IGA deficiency was important, I just read that on your site. I was diagnosed with that 20 years ago. I did call my doctor and let her know I was IGA deficient, they didn't seem to think that was a problem.

My mother's aunt was diagnosed with celiac about 4 years ago. My grandfather died of colon cancer 2 years ago, now I wonder if he had celiac also.

My question really is "If you have blunting of the villi, and get a negative lab, can you still have celiac?"

Thanks, for any help.


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Welcome to the forum, Jo. We're glad you are here. Yes, you can have negative bloodwork and positive results of an endoscopy. If you are IGA deficient, you will probably never test positive on your celiac panel. Your positive biopsy should be enough to dx you but if your dr's are still wavering, you can go right on the gluten-free diet, yet today, and the positive dietary response should do the trick for convincing them.

Some of your symptoms will show a fairly quick response and still others may take some time. Because you've been battling this illness so long, some problems may never clear up completely. Also you may show other food sensitivities over time. Be aware of this if you still don't feel 100% after awhile. The best way to start is with simple whole foods like meat, vegetables, fruit, nuts and beans. Use single ingredient spices and probably hold off on dairy for a couple of months. Keep a food journal and note any symptoms there as well. When you have a handle on this method of eating, then you can add new foods one at a time every few days. This will help you identify any other foods that bother you right away.

Thanks for joining our group and feel free to ask anything you wish. We're here for you.

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Yes, blunted villi are usually celiac. About 20% of celiacs with lots of villi damage can have negative blood tests. You need IgG type tests if IgA deficient.

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