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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

      This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.   Subscribe to FREE Celiac.com email alerts What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease? - list blood tests, endo with biopsy, genetic test and enterolab (not diagnostic) Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful? The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients) Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients) Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes Where can I buy gluten-free stuff? Support this site by shopping at The Celiac.com Store.

Help On My Blood Test Results Please?
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Hi I'm a newbie here and just wanted some thoughts from you all on my blood test results for celiac. it says lgA anti- TTG was 3 and my endomysial antibody was weakly positive. Could this mean I have celiac disease? I've been having symptoms like diarrhoea and constipation, bloating, really bad belly pains and a feeling of needing to go to the loo a lot, sometimes even after I've just been to the loo. and i feel sick all the time, especially after eating breakfast and dinner, also I've had constant vaginal thrush for the last 2 years that I cant get rid of, I've been to the doctors so many times but they keep giving me medicines that don't work for me, but that's a different problem lol. Just thought I'd mention it if it helps. Also my iron levels have been low when I'e had that tested. I would be very grateful for any thoughts anyone has? 

 

Also I am having an endoscopy done at the end of this month.

 

Marie ~

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Hi Marie, be sure to keep eating gluten (bread) till you get the endoscopy.

 

EMA is 100 % specific so that sounds good to me.

 

 

You can also try a Celiac blood panel after you've eaten more gluten 

 

Total IgA
Transglutaminase IgA      tTG-IgA
Deaminated Gliadin IgA    DGP-IgA
Deaminated Gliadin IgG   DGP-IgG

 

In your case you could just do the DGP tests but sometimes the whole panel is cheaper than individual tests.

 

As for the symptoms,  they vary a lot from one person to another so maybe someone else can say more on that.

My bias is that it's the milk that causes diareah which can be caused by the celiac damaging the villi that make the enzymes for milk.

Test this theory by eliminating dairy. Hard Cheeze might be ok.

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Hi Marcus, thank you for your reply, yes I'm eating gluten and making sure I eat plenty of bread before the endoscopy. I do feel extremely sick every morning just after eating cereal so the milk could have something to do with it. Thanks for the advice, I was wondering also that if I don't have celiac disease then are there any other things that could have caused my blood results to be weak positive? Thanks again, Marie ~

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Marie.......the EMA or Endomysial antibody is very specific to celiac disease.  It is usually positive or negative so if it came back as a positive, then there is a very strong chance you have Celiac.  Were these the only 2 tests they ran?

Your symptoms and low iron are another factor in this.  They correspond with Celiac.  I know you are having the endoscopy also but just remember that a negative biopsy does not rule Celiac out.  They need to take as many samples as possible for a more accurate diagnosis but you can still test negative on the biopsy and have Celiac...it all depends on how much damage you have and how spotty it is.  The small intestine is long and doctors don't always hit the right spots were damage has occured.  Even if your biopsy comes back negative, I would still strongly advise a dietary trial.

 

The thrush problem is common with Celiac and I suffered for YEARS with oral thrush before diagnosis.  Your gut is all messed up and the normally present good bacteria can be destroyed by active Celiac.  You may have a systemic candida problem, which can require some more dietary changes for awhile.....they are usually not permanent, once the problem is under control.  For the time being, I would suggest really limiting your sugar intake because sugar feeds yeast.  I hate to say this but no alcohol.  It is pure sugar and can really aggravate the problem.  Go out and buy a good probiotic and take it daily....make sure it is gluten free, which most are anyway but check the ingredients listing.  These will help to re-populate your gut with all the good bacteria you are probably missing. Find out if you have Celiac because going gluten-free will help the thrush problem also. Have they given you any anti-fungals to take?  DiFlucan is one used in the US and it's a powerful anti-fungal.  Here is a link for you to read about treating fungal infections.  http://www.medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Antifungal+Drugs,+Systemic

 

I used DiFlucan a couple of times and it helped but it wasn't until I went gluten-free and healed my gut that the problem completely ceased for me.  You are having the same problems as I had but it can be solved.  Mainstream doctors aren't very good at these problems so I would suggest going strictly gluten-free after all your testing is complete and ask about an anti-fungal medication.....a systemic one.  It will take awhile for all this to be taken care of but it can be done.  I haven't had thrush in at least 10 years now and I was a total mess for awhile.  Hang in there.....you are getting close to your answers!

 

The link I posted came up as a blank page but hit the search button at the top and it should pop up for you.  It automatically puts in a search for systemic anti-fungal treatment.

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Hi Gemini, Thanks for your reply. I think they were the only two tests but I'm not too sure, I just saw those two tests on a letter I received from the Gastroenterologist. That's interesting because I've had low iron levels for about a year now and no doctor thought anything of it just gave me iron tablets, its strange how they seem to just treat the symptoms instead of finding out why I had low iron in the first place. 

Okay thank you so much for the advice, hopefully the endoscopy can give me the diagnosis because it would be the answer to so many of my symptoms, but if not then I will definitely try that no gluten diet and see if it helps x With the thrush problem also when I kept going to the doctors so many times over the last 2 years no doctor has bothered in trying to find out why my thrush wont go away, they just kept on giving me different medicines for it and sending me away, I just wish that they could have sent me to a specialist or something when I first told them it wouldn't go away. :( I've just finished taking a 3 week Antifungal called Fluconazole but it didn't work and I think its only made the problem worse, also I've had a few swab tests recently to try and prove to my doctor that I do still have thrush but they have come back normal, I'm so confused because I know I do still have it and I've got the same symptoms, is there any reason that a swab would come back normal even though I know I have thrush? its so confusing.

 

I'm taking Probiotics so I'm hoping that it will help the thrush. Oh and I've asked a few of my doctors if there is any link between Celiac and thrush but they all laughed at me and said no way that's impossible, just shows how much they know lol. I might give that Candida diet a try too after my endoscopy, and I don't drink alcohol much anyway so that's not a problem :) Thanks again for your reply you've cheered me up a bit, I keep feeling very low about my health problems and just wish I could get better, why does this all have to be so complicated lol, Thanks again x

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Taking the anti-fungals might have impacted the results of your tests recently.  I am not surprised but angered that doctors STILL have no clue what they are doing with regards to Candida infections.  Many refuse to believe that you can have a systemic infection from it because, usually, those kinds of body wide infections happen regularly with HIV patients or those with completely impaired immune sytems.....fungal infections take over and rarely go away in those patients.  So, if you don't have HIV, they laugh you off.  They don't do their homework and realize that with impaired gut function, fungus can invade and take over if you don't have the right balance of intestinal flora.  This is what leads to worsening of leaky gut and that's a real problem.

 

You need to cut way back on simple sugars in order to starve the fungus. If you want a science demonstration of how that works, add sugar to yeast and see what happens.  This is what bakers do to "proof" yeast for bread making.  It checks to see if the yeast is still active.  Sugar will make yeast bubble and expand...it feeds the yeast.  Without starving the yeast and allowing it to dump into your bloodstream, the anti-fungal won't touch it.  I know this from experience....done the candida diet twice and then I found out I also had Celiac.  Between dumping the simple sugars and taking DiFlucan, plus going gluten-free, the results were nothing short of amazing.  I have never had another bout of oral thrush again.  I did the candida diet before I was diagnosed with Celiac but the candida diet worked very well in making my gut feel better, even with undiagnosed Celiac.  Funny enough, the candida diet echoes the gluten-free diet.....many of the gluten foods also contain alot of sugar so by eliminatiing them for the candida cleanse, I made the Celiac symptoms far less worse.  It a vicious cycle, my dear.

 

Have your testing done and then go gluten-free and cut out the simple sugars.  I found I could eat brown rice on the candida diet because it's a whole grain and doesn't immediately break down into sugar.  It didn't seem to hinder my progress.  Stay away from foods containing yeast.  I know this sounds cruel but it's temporary, I promise, and once your gut heals and becomes balanced again, you can start to add foods back in.  I can eat sugar now but limit my amounts.....but I can have a cookie or a piece of candy without a problem.  It's harder to dump sugar than gluten and it can affect your mood because of the blood sugar thing.  That usually lasts about 2 weeks and it's not easy BUT I promise you that once you get off all the sugar, you won't have mood swings or food cravings......honest.  And it will get rid of that nasty yeast problem.  Sometimes you may have to do another course of an anti-fungal because after the yeast starts dumping into your blood stream, you'll have a bout with thrush or feel horrible.  That's a good thing because you are purging it from your body.  Use your doctors to get the tests and meds you need but ignore their stupid remarks because, you are right, they can be ignorant dopes about all this.  Make sure to take those probiotics too because they are so beneficial in getting your gut bacteria balanced again.  Be patient....this takes time but I overcame and recovered from both issues well by doing this and you can too. 

 

If you have any more questions or need any more help, we are all here.  We won't laugh at you like the AMA because WE have been there also.

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Hi Gemini, I was thinking that too that the anti fungal medicine might have affected the swab results because my thrush symptoms wasn't that bad at the time but they are back even worse now. one of my doctors actually told me he didn't believe in candida and that I should stop looking online about it because he doesn't think it exists. I was thinking too that if I do have celiac then that could be the cause of my thrush problems because my immune system would be focusing too much on the gluten instead of fixing the thrush problems. it would explain so much lol. After my endoscopy I will try eating less sugar but its gonna be hard since I have a sweet tooth, and I eat gluten soo much I don't really know how I'm going to live without it but I'm really hoping I will adjust to that diet :) 

 

Thank you so much for all your advice you've helped me understand about celiac and candida so much more. I was also wondering if celiac and candida problems are genetic? because my great auntie had thrush for years and years and nothing worked for her either, and my cousin and her mother (my auntie) have thrush that keeps coming back. it might be a coincidence but I think its worth looking into, if I come back positive for celiac after my endoscopy then I'll make sure I get all my family tested too. so many family members of mine have been diagnosed with bowel problems like IBS and never knew why, one of my cousins cant hold her bowel movements so she's always rushing to the loo, just imagine I've found the answer and we can all go gluten free lol. Its so nice to know that I might have the answers to why I've been feeling so rough, everyone tells me that I shouldn't be wanting to have celiac disease but I'm happy because at least then I'd know how to help myself get better. :) I just wish doctors could admit when they don't understand something instead of pretending they know it all. Thanks again for your replys :) Marie ~

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Hi Marcus, thank you for your reply, yes I'm eating gluten and making sure I eat plenty of bread before the endoscopy. I do feel extremely sick every morning just after eating cereal so the milk could have something to do with it. Thanks for the advice, I was wondering also that if I don't have celiac disease then are there any other things that could have caused my blood results to be weak positive? Thanks again, Marie ~

 

The casein in the milk can also cause villus atrophy.

There is some information here about this and other causes.

http://www.cureceliacdisease.org/archives/faq/what-else-can-cause-damage-to-the-small-intestine-other-than-celiac-disease

 

 

Read this about the EMA:

 

http://www.cureceliacdisease.org/archives/faq/what-is-an-ema-blood-test

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Thank you for the links Marcus they were very informative :)

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