Celiac.com Sponsor (A1):


Join eNewsletter


Celiac.com Sponsor (A1-m):



Join eNewsletter

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Tidings

Family History Of Intestinal, Colon Cancers?

Recommended Posts

Hi again,

Was wondering if others here who have diagnosed Celiac Disease have noted a trend of intestinal or colon cancers in their family tree? Was doing some research in that regard recently and noted that several family members have died from intestinal or colon cancer (father, grandmother on mother's side, aunt on mother's side, cousin on mother's side), so it sounds like there is a definite trend toward intestinal cancers on both sides of this family tree.

This leads me to wonder if these people might have had undiagnosed/unrecognized Celiac Disease all or part of their lives which actually progressed on to terminal cancer in their intestines. Would like to hear from others, just out of curiosity, to hear whether they have noticed something similar in their ancestors or other relatives that would suggest unrecognized Celiac or gluten intolerance in their family trees.

Thanks for taking time to read and respond!


Thanks to Sarah at personalizedcause.com for allowing me to adapt their beautiful green Celiac Awareness ribbon as my "avatar" graphic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Celiac.com Sponsor (A8):

Celiac.com Sponsor (A8):


Hi again,

Was wondering if others here who have diagnosed Celiac Disease have noted a trend of intestinal or colon cancers in their family tree? Was doing some research in that regard recently and noted that several family members have died from intestinal or colon cancer (father, grandmother on mother's side, aunt on mother's side, cousin on mother's side), so it sounds like there is a definite trend toward intestinal cancers on both sides of this family tree.

This leads me to wonder if these people might have had undiagnosed/unrecognized Celiac Disease all or part of their lives which actually progressed on to terminal cancer in their intestines. Would like to hear from others, just out of curiosity, to hear whether they have noticed something similar in their ancestors or other relatives that would suggest unrecognized Celiac or gluten intolerance in their family trees.

Thanks for taking time to read and respond!

I have wondered the same thing. I have had many relatives that have suffered from intestinal cancer as well. I guarantee there is a link due to celiac disease being genetic, and also not being easy to diagnose in the past.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From what I've read (could be wrong!) the most common type of cancer in untreated celiac is intestinal lymphoma and even then it doesn't happen too, too often. I don't *think* a celiac's colon cancer risk is heightened because of having celiac. What have others read?


Thanks!!!

---------------------------------------------------

Kim

Newly diagnosed Celiac trying to learn the ropes

Very Positive tTG 3/10

Positive EGD/Biopsy 4/10

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have colon cancer, IBS, Crohns (I suspect Celiacs too) all in my family and all on the female side. My girls have issues with their guts too. I feel bad because I know what they are in for pain wise.


Started exhibiting symptoms 1979

DXed IBS 1987

Self Dx Gluten sensitive via elimination diet July 2010

Gluten free since July 12 2010

Carb&Sugar light August 2010

experimenting with being Grain light

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have colon cancer in my family's history. My paternal grandmother had it (and her sister died from it - plus other members of her family had it also), and my dad is at risk. When I told my grandma all of my Celiac symptoms she replied, "Oh my!! You sound just like me!" Then she preceded to describe to me classic Celiac symptoms that have been going on for years. My dad has complained of issues with his "system" for as long as i can remember as well. That's just a few people, I suspect there are more family members on that side suffering the symptoms. None of them want to be tested though, because the thought of giving up gluten is just more than their little minds can handle. ;) Sad, but true. I keep telling them to get tested, but it's just easier for them to live in painful ignorance I guess.


Officially diagnosed with Celiac via positive blood testing - May 2010

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Personally, I think it's entirely possible. If anyone has celiac disease, then they'd have the immuno-compromised issue AND the nutrition deficit. Combine that with similar genetics (within a family, I mean), and I think it wouldn't be too much of a stretch to imagine some similar issues.

My family doesn't have colon or intestinal cancer, but there are some similarities within the family. After I started telling family members about our diagnosis, I've found out that the following are relatively high in my family:

1. Lung and breathing difficulties that don't track like normal asthma or illness would. These contributed to a few deaths in the past few decades.

3. Lots of little issues that have one thing in common: the docs always say 'we never see this happen in someone your age.' Tumors, cancers, heart trouble, glaucoma - all happening earlier than expected.

Many in our family have died younger than expected for the same type of thing. Cancers that hit very young, heart trouble very young, etc... Definitely some kind of trend in our family, and it sounds like yours, too. Whether Celiac caused or not, who knows, but I imagine that if it's not caused by celiac disease, there could definitely be some kind of genetic connection to whatever IS causing the cancers, ya know?


T.H.

Gluten free since August 10, 2009.
21 years with undiagnosed Celiac Disease

23 years with undiagnosed sulfite sensitivity

25 years with undiagnosed mast cell activation disorder (MCAD) 

 

Daughter: celiac and MCAD positive

Son: gluten intolerant
Father, brother: celiac positive

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have not tested for celiac, and I refuse to. But, I believe I have it especially with the family history I have.

My father died of colon cancer. He had it for close to 10 years before it got him, but I can remember him having stomach problems as far back as I can remember. He had his gallbladder out when I was 10. The dr's told him he wouldn't have his problems anymore after it came out but everything just came back. Anyway, his mother had ovarian cancer, her sister lung cancer.

He had 3 brothers and one sister with everything from lung cancer to stomach cancer. I have a cousin at the age of 28 die from brain stem cancer. I have a 34 yr old cousin who is battling liver cancer. 5 cousins with breast cancer, kidney and colon cancer.

My mother lost her only sister a couple months ago to esophageal and lung cancer. She lost 4 of 7 brothers to stomach and colon cancer, her father to stomach cancer and 3 of his sisters to lung, colon and breast cancer. Several cousins to breast, lung and colon cancers.

All total 46 relatives on both sides of the family. These are aunts, uncles and first cousins down to 3rd and 4th cousins.

Family reunions sometimes were a hoot because after eating it was usually a race to see who got to the bathroom first.

My brother is so convinced he will get cancer that he dosen't intend to go gluten free. He just dosen't believe that a lot of his health problems will resolve if he would, even with my showing him that it dosen't have to happen.

Anyway, that is the motivation keeping me gluten free. I just remember what my father's life was like the last several years.


Lupus, Connective Tissue Disease with Fibro type symptoms, Anemia, Anxiety, Depression, RA, Rynauds Syndrome, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Erosive Gastritis, Osteoporosis, Degenerative Disc Disease, Scoliosis, Bulging discs in lower back and neck, Pinched Nerves.

 

Soy free, MSG free, mostly Dairy free. Endoscopy shows blunted Villi which dr states as gluten sensitivity, so goin back to being gluten free

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not colon cancer but type 2 diabetes is rampant.

TXPLOWGIRL, my brother is exactly the same. I know beyond a doubt he is intolerant to gluten. His symptoms have been much more severe than mine over the years, but his attitude is that he might as well enjoy life while he's here. Personally I'm enjoying my life much more now that I'm not dealing with the millions of health issues I was dealing with 6 months ago.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not colon cancer but type 2 diabetes is rampant.

TXPLOWGIRL, my brother is exactly the same. I know beyond a doubt he is intolerant to gluten. His symptoms have been much more severe than mine over the years, but his attitude is that he might as well enjoy life while he's here. Personally I'm enjoying my life much more now that I'm not dealing with the millions of health issues I was dealing with 6 months ago.

Yeah, I have a sister who says, "Well I just get on with it", meaning what, killing yourself? I says to myself. When she comes to stay, on the way from the airport she always says "Do you have enough toilet paper?" :lol::blink:


Neroli

"Everything that can be counted does not necessarily count; everything that counts cannot necessarily be counted." - Albert Einstein

"Life is not weathering the storm; it is learning to dance in the rain"

"Whatever the question, the answer is always chocolate." Nigella Lawson

------------

Caffeine free 1973

Lactose free 1990

(Mis)diagnosed IBS, fibromyalgia '80's and '90's

Diagnosed psoriatic arthritis 2004

Self-diagnosed gluten intolerant, gluten-free Nov. 2007

Soy free March 2008

Nightshade free Feb 2009

Citric acid free June 2009

Potato starch free July 2009

(Totally) corn free Nov. 2009

Legume free March 2010

Now tolerant of lactose

Celiac.com - Celiac Disease Board Moderator

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am adopted on one side so I didn't find out about my family history on my biological mothers side until later, but apparently there is an uncle with early bowel cancers, and all the women have bowel problems (IBS/Crohns). My dad has Celiac markers but refuses to stick to gluten-free and his mother has crohns.

I though it was VEEEERY interesting to find all this out.


Diagnosed with Gluten Allergy April 2010. Family history of Celiac disease and bowel cancers. Already feeling a billion times better since going gluten free.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My father died of colon cancer when he was 52.

I was only 2 years oldbut my siblings said he had stomach problems for YEARS, took Maalox all the time etc....so who knows...


TTG >200 (normal <10)

IgA gliadin 24 (normal <11)

IgG gliadin 38 (normal <11)

Endoscopy showed damage that looked like "classic celiac", biopsy showed total villous atrophy

Started gluten-free diet Aug 31, 2010

Only real symptoms are huge weight loss and neuropathy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a very small family so not much chance to see any patterns that may show up in a larger group. Saying that, my grandmother survived colon cancer in her 50s, she came very close to dying. She recently went gluten free and is doing amazing, from her symptoms we think she's had gluten problems all her life.

I recently had a precancerous colon polyp removed, which is very uncommon in my age group (25). I will be monitored every 3 years, as they expect them to recurr, and they would progress to cancer if left there.

I don't think it's coincidence that we both are the ones with big gluten problems and I have unusual polyp development, luckily the the rest of the family has escaped it so far, but my sister hasn't had her colonoscopy yet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

On my mother's side- my mother has complete bowel prolapse after numerous surgeries- she was previously diagnosed with "IBS", one female cousin died of stomach and colon cancer and another cousin/her sister had her colon removed as she "always had problems with it." Though no one can or will explain to me what these problems were. She won't talk to me about celiac/gluten intolerance either.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My Grandfather died of colon cancer, my uncle presently is suffering from colon cancer and endless other health problems, weight problem, and diabetes.

My dad passed away a little over 3 months ago of lung cancer ( he did'nt even smoke), so i've been a real mess.

My grandmother passed away just over a year ago at 99, and she survived cancer twice, the first time before I was even born, and i'm 43.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you to all who have answered in this thread thus far. Very interesting, the way so many of us have folks with "stomach problems" including intestinal cancers in our family tree. Most of the books I've read about Celiac disease do suggest that untreated Celiac can progress to various cancers. Knowing this, especially when you've lost relatives to intestinal cancers, certainly does give one more incentive to STAY ON THE Gluten-free DIET!


Thanks to Sarah at personalizedcause.com for allowing me to adapt their beautiful green Celiac Awareness ribbon as my "avatar" graphic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just wanted to add on if any are still reading. I have Lynch syndrome also known as HNPCC (Hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer). This is a genetic condition that predisposes one to colon cancer and a few others types of cancer. Up to 15% of all colon cancers are conencted to HNPCC. If there is a history of colon cancer occurring at younger than expected ages in your family, I urge you to read up:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hereditary_nonpolyposis_colorectal_cancer

If you meet all of the following criteria, you can have genetic testing performed to see if you have HNPCC:

* Three or more family members with a confirmed diagnosis of colorectal cancer, one of whom is a first degree (parent, child, sibling) relative of the other two

* Two successive affected generations

* One or more of the HNPCC-related cancers diagnosed under age 50 years

If you have a family history of cancer then you should speak to your doctor about cancer screening.

It's very important to keep an accurate family medical history. That means not only who had cancer but the specific type of cancer.

I also have celiac disease but I have only ever read that untreated celiac can lead to intestinal lymphoma in a very few cases.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites