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MJS

Blood Tests

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Hey all,

I just started college this fall. I go to Johns Hopkins and all freshmen are required to buy a (really expensive) meal plan. Since I am spending so much on it, I try to eat almost everything at the dining hall.

However, I feel like I am getting a lot of cross contamination by eating there. They keep rice waffles and rice bread for me, but I have to use the same toaster as everyone else, as well as the same ingredients for my sandwiches (lunch meat, cheese, veggies, etc.). I know that the Boar's Head meat and cheeses are gluten-free. I try to only eat things that I know what's in them (fresh fruit, veggies, plain rice), but it would not be hard for stray crumbs or flower to make their way over.

I just feel generally crappy a lot of the time.I get some similar bloating and stomach pains that I used to before my diagnosis, only not as intense.

I also have never lived in a fully gluten-free home. My mother didn't really believe that even a little bit of gluten could make me sick, and so she never got me separate butter dishes, toaster, etc. But I did feel a lot better when I lived at home and cooked all my own food.

What I want to know is, is there a blood test that I can get to measure my gluten levels? I want to know if what I am eating is making me sick, or if something else is going on.

Do I need to see a doctor to get this figured out? Can I get the blood test without a doctor's visit? Last year I "graduated" from my pediatric gastroenterologist - they said that I only needed to come back if I had any complications. But that doctor is back home.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Maya

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There are blood tests to see if your immune system is being stimulated by gluten exposure. They talk about them in the testing forum but basically they are

Antiendomysial antibody (IgA EMA)

Antigliadin antibody (AGA-IgA and AGA-IGG)

Tissue transglutaminase (tTG-IgA and tTg-IgG)

Total serum IgA

There's probably a student health clinic of some sort there. You might go to them and explain your prior diagnosis and current symptoms and see if they're willing to do the blood work.

Enterolab has stool and mouth swab tests you can do on your own for a few hundred dollars depending on which tests you do.

Hope this helps and you can get better soon.

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Maya dear, you are definitely getting cc if you are sharing a toaster. I am sorry you are having to deal with this :(

You didn't ask this directly, but I feel a responsibility to mention that you should be medically exempt from your school's meal plan :)

http://www.celiac.com/gluten-free/index.ph...=discrimination

http://ksusentinel.com/news/student-with-f...-plan-exemption

Jillian

Hey all,

I just started college this fall. I go to Johns Hopkins and all freshmen are required to buy a (really expensive) meal plan. Since I am spending so much on it, I try to eat almost everything at the dining hall.

However, I feel like I am getting a lot of cross contamination by eating there. They keep rice waffles and rice bread for me, but I have to use the same toaster as everyone else, as well as the same ingredients for my sandwiches (lunch meat, cheese, veggies, etc.). I know that the Boar's Head meat and cheeses are gluten-free. I try to only eat things that I know what's in them (fresh fruit, veggies, plain rice), but it would not be hard for stray crumbs or flower to make their way over.

I just feel generally crappy a lot of the time.I get some similar bloating and stomach pains that I used to before my diagnosis, only not as intense.

I also have never lived in a fully gluten-free home. My mother didn't really believe that even a little bit of gluten could make me sick, and so she never got me separate butter dishes, toaster, etc. But I did feel a lot better when I lived at home and cooked all my own food.

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