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Okay. So, almost eight years ago I started having IBS symptoms. At the time I was taking Zoloft for depression and was on it, at this point, for about two years. I thought it was somehow related to a side effect of Zoloft (for depression), so I didn't consider it a big deal, even though it was completely frustrating to deal with since I didn't know how to control it and eventually found that Immodium helps a lot in coping.

Well, about 14 months ago, I started having symptoms of muscle fatigue, first in my legs. It felt like I had worked them out a little the day before and they were woozy the next day. Now, please let me explain I'm not referring to muscle weakness, because my ability to still lift the same amount I did before getting these symptoms is the same, they just feel fatigued as if they're not getting something. Eventually, the fatigue spread to my arms and neck, but only in more complicated days. Note: there is no pain whatsoever.

Gradually, I also noticed over the past few months that if I don't eat within the first hour of waking, I start feel like I'm having a diabetic fit (though I don't have diabetes). My muscles get really fatigued, I feel drained almost, and as soon as I eat and take my multi-vitamin, I start getting better and more stable. If, however, I eat immediately after waking, I remain stable most of the day. My muscles feel okay, though still somewhat fatigued.

I've also noticed my joints. My thumb joints seem to be the worst. If I happen to use my thumbs or any joint A LOT, like when playing guitar, for instance, they wear out quick. They feel a little painful, but not so bad I can't use them. Also, if I don't sleep enough, I'm super tired all day. It's all like I'm not getting the right nutrients or something. However, I eat three meals a day.

Finally, my stools sometimes float, and have that greasy stuff floating around in the water. I just started reading on Celiac disease today and it really looks like a lot of symptoms I have. It would make sense to me that my symptoms would seem like I wasn't getting vitamins and nutrients because ever since I started taking my multi vitamins I'm a little better, though still not "normal".

I do sometimes get cold when others at work aren't. I have gone to the E.R. when these symptoms first came on and then again three months into it and the doctor came back and said "Everything looks perfect", and sent me on my way. They also took my sugar (by pricking my finger) and it came back fine as well.

So, that all said, no I don't have a regular doctor, and I know I need one, but I'm just terrified of getting in there and him telling me I need a colonoscopy done. I've never been put under and I just can't stand the thought of it. I would probably talk my doctor into giving me one while awake, but I just don't know.

Anyway, I'm just trying to figure out if these symptoms follow along with Celiac disease. I'm prety sure it does, based on the information I've read, but I'm new so I don't know.

Lux, Vita, Amor,

MacMuireadhaigh

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Welcome! Your symptoms are right in line with Celiac. But you will not know if it is gluten unless you either get tested or give a trial to the gluten free diet and then challenge by eating gluten. Since you are reluctant to be put under, and you don't have a Dr. you could go gluten free and see if it helps your symptoms. However, if you think you ever will want to test, you should keep eating gluten until the testing is done. I didn't wait for testing. I went gluten free....and the next time I ate gluten I was sick as a dog. Muscle weakness and fatigue were one of the first symptoms. Depression is also a symptom. Zoloft...yes, the side effects say one could experience diarrhea while on it. I had that too while taking it...and it delayed my figuring out what was wrong with me because like you, I thought it was just a side effect of the medication. You have a decision to make. Do you want to be tested for Celiac? If so then you should do it now. If it wouldn't matter to you to have the diagnosis and you just want to feel well, then you could try gluten-free and see if your symptoms clear up. Incidentally it is an endoscopy where they put the tube down your throat and take biopsies just past the stomach that tests for Celiac, not the colonoscopy...that is the other end. But I think they give you anesthesia for both tests. Your depression may also be a symptom of Celiac. You have several....as you have figured out. Keep reading and thinking and you make the best decision for you. Glad you found this site. It is a goldmine of information and support.

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So, by getting tested do you mean a blood test? I read somewhere on the forum that a doctor took someone's blood and could tell they were celiac just from it, but I don't know. Thanks so much for replying. I'm feeling closer to figuring out what this is already, and feeling comfortable too just knowing there's a community out there for support. I will stay gluten free for the next few weeks and see what happens.

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They can test for Celiac disease by drawing blood and running a panel. However, it isn't always 100% accurate.

If the test results says "positive"..you have Celiac, but if it comes back negative you can still have Celiac or gluten intolerance.

They can also do an endoscope test, where you would be sedated, but not "out". They spray a numbing spray in your throat and send a flexible tube with a little camera down your esophagus and into your tummy and on to the small intestine. The Dr can look for visible damage and take biopsies for testing.

It can get tricky with the endoscope too. The small intestine is very long. The scope doesn't reach through the entire length of it. It is possible to have damage beyond the reach of the scope.

I know all of this sounds very confusing. If you are tested and don't get a diagnosis you can always do a test of trying the gluten free diet for about 3 months then try eating again and see if you get a reaction. If you do..you have your answer.

A lot of the symptoms you mention could be due to malabsorption of vitamins and minerals indicating you might have some damage going on..or a very poor diet?

Good luck to you. I hope you get this sorted out. It's no fun feeling bad.

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Well, that's just it. I eat three meals a day, get enough protein, vitamins (from multi-vitamins), etc. I eat a good amount. That said, it just feels like my body isn't absorbing the nutrients from it and over a long period of time has resulted in me having these symptoms. I truly feel as if I'm at some stage of being stripped of my much needed layer of nutrients, since this has been going on for so long. I do know I will see a doctor soon just to get this checked out, I just want to know my symptoms follow along the celiac lines, which I'm pretty sure they do.

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Hi there. I was recently diagnosed with Celiac but only through a biopsy. It was a super simple procedure and it is 100 percent positive. My Dr. said it is the only way to be completely sure. Initially when I came out of the procedure he said that everything looked perfect and he did not think I had Celiac. I felt a little foolish for having the test done because my only symptom was fatigue and bloating. he called me a few days later though and said he was so surprised at my positive result. I had been gluten free for 7 months and I still showed up positive.

This, however is not recommended as it may interfere with your result.

I would have it done and get it crossed off your list. Then you can move on and know for sure. It's the not knowing that is frustrating.

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By procedure, you mean an endoscopy? I'm terrified of ever being put "under". I heard sometime you're just sedated, but then others tell me you put out. I don't know what to think.

One more question, what kind of specialist would know about Celiac disease? Thanks.

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A gastroenterologist is SUPPOSED to know about Celiac. But that doesn't mean they DO know. Many people remain in pain and undiagnosed for far too long due to Dr.'s not recognizing or testing for Celiac.

There are couple of other things you could do.

Get vitamin levels checked.

The vitamins Celiac's are usually or commonly deficient in are A,E,D,C,K,Calcium, Magnesium, Zinc, B 12, and/or all the B vitamins, iron and folic acid. There are some of these that are not commonly tested for, the different forms of anemia are also common with Celiac and can easily be tested for by a blood draw.

Just a thought...if you are determined to avoid sedation for a biopsy.

I never got tested for Celiac, but I did get vitamin levels checked and D was low and thyroid troubles turned out to be Hashimoto's ...very common for Celiac.

Get all the information you can about your health by a blood draw....hopefully any deficiencies will show.

Also the thyroid is commonly effected by Celiac. Get your thyroid tests...and you will know if that has anything to do with how poorly you feel.

There is really no specialist for Celiac. Gastroenterologists and Dermatologists dabble in diagnosing it but the ones that don't know about Celiac are a dime a dozen...but then every once in a great while...someone comes on here and says how wonderful their Dr. is to have suspected and tested them for Celiac....Those gems are as rare as Andean Condors....(My son says there are only 300 of those left in the wild) Likewise there are only a handful of really progressive and "with it" Dr.'s who recognize and test for the symptoms of Celiac.

OK, and I just want to add lastly that there is also the form of Gluten Intolerance that is not Celiac. That can make you feel really lousy...and there is no test for it...it is only found by eliminating gluten and dietary response. You may not test postive for anything...by blood...but you may still be intolerant of gluten and only you can determine this one. Really wish you good luck

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