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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.

A Miracle?!? - Change In My Reaction To Gluten
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92 posts in this topic

OK now you want to hear my 21 year old side- first of all its just a hypothesis and just because you say things are not possible doesn't mean they aren't. i never said to not eat gluten free i was seeing if its possible to heal and eat normally once again because I BELIEVE that celiac disease and gluten intolerance are two different things. i believe celiac disease is permanent and gluten intolerance is developed by leaky gut, intestinal inflammation, etc. i don't really care to make sure all my grammar is perfect on a celiac website. you can make fun of a 21 year old all day and night apparently but at least im trying to do something good with my life and I've studied my butt off in high school i had prom less nights so i could help people. but if my patients are all going to be like you, i think id do alot better changing my major to psychology because I'd lose my head. get off your butt and try to do something useful instead making fun of someone who is and maybe go to college for a semester and find out that wikipedia is NOT a reliable site.

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OK now you want to hear my 21 year old side- first of all its just a hypothesis and just because you say things are not possible doesn't mean they aren't. i never said to not eat gluten free i was seeing if its possible to heal and eat normally once again because I BELIEVE that celiac disease and gluten intolerance are two different things. i believe celiac disease is permanent and gluten intolerance is developed by leaky gut, intestinal inflammation, etc. i don't really care to make sure all my grammar is perfect on a celiac website. you can make fun of a 21 year old all day and night apparently but at least im trying to do something good with my life and I've studied my butt off in high school i had prom less nights so i could help people. but if my patients are all going to be like you, i think id do alot better changing my major to psychology because I'd lose my head. get off your butt and try to do something useful instead making fun of someone who is and maybe go to college for a semester and find out that wikipedia is NOT a reliable site.

You're making good points, but you are undermining what you are trying to say with arrogance. For starters, it takes a trivial amount of effort to hit the shift key and type with proper grammar. Are you trying to say that we are not worth the trouble? I thought I had some respect for you as a poster, but you just fell seriously in my estimation if that's how you feel. I have another hint for you. The janitor who keeps your classrooms tidy so you can learn is also "trying to do something good with his life." So is the guy who drives the bus you take to school, and the mechanic who keeps your car running so you can get to and from the hospital. You are not a special snowflake and the sooner you learn some humility the better a doctor you will be.

As far as gluten intolerance vs. celiac, you need to do a lot more reading. There is a very clear continuum from some types of genetic gluten intolerance through to celiac and total villous atrophy. Studies on siblings and children of celiacs show progression from mild gluten intolerance to seroconversion and villous damage if the child keeps eating wheat. There are other types of gluten intolerance with somewhat different molecular mechanisms that probably don't lead to celiac, like sensitivity to wheat germ agglutinin, sensitivity to FOS in wheat, or reactions to gliadorphin.

@Irishheart, I believe in the articles "remission" means a person is eating a normal diet with no symptoms or villous damage. I was actually more impressed by the possibility of occasional recoveries when I heard Markku Mäki speak at a symposium. He has seen it in clinical practice, and it's the experiences of clinicians like Mäki that are providing hope for a celiac vaccine and cure.

Do you tell people to try eating gluten? No. Most celiacs will experience a relapse and conservatism is obviously the wise course of action; however, I don't think denying that some people go into "remission" where they completely stop having symptoms from gluten is helpful either.

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OK now you want to hear my 21 year old side- gut, intestinal inflammation, etc. i don't really care to make sure all my grammar is perfect on a celiac website.

All I was trying to say is that it is very hard to read some of your posts and understand what you are trying to say. You are trying to explain things that can be quite complex and hard to understand, if written well. I think some of people's misunderstanding of your ideas about gluten intolerance could be because they were hard to read. Hard to tell when one idea ends and the next begins.

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Do some Googling. There are med schools that do a combined program of BA/BS MD, accepting kids out of high school. Most programs are 6-8 years. I can't really find any details on how they choose who to weed out over time, so it's a little curious.

It is, however, my expectation that anyone fully in the medical portion would be able to use capitalization, punctuation, grammar, and know the difference between their, they're, and there.

And someone professing to study the disease ought to know that it is celiac disease, not the plural form.

Thanks, Jestgar, for stating the obvious. Anyone with such poor writing skills could not possibly be in any medical school that would turn out an actual MD....not that an actual MD is much help in diagnosing Celiac Disease. :P

As far as anyone being able to totally recover from Celiac and eat gluten again, I don't think so. I would believe that if someone had a wheat allergy but full blown Celiac Disease is an entirely different animal. I have the utmost respect for Skylark as she seems to be one of the more intelligent posters to this forum and has always contributed valuable information but I just cannot agree with this notion of a Celiac recovering to that point. I went to the age of 46 before a diagnosis was made and my body was trashed by then. It took me 3 years to recover fully and now I have 4 autoimmune diseases from having gone so long without a diagnosis. My Sjogren's Syndrome has not improved that much and I suffer with it daily, even though I never cheat and am strict with my diet. So anyone contemplating eating gluten again...good luck with that. You will live to regret that decision, trust me.

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OK now you want to hear my 21 year old side- first of all its just a hypothesis and just because you say things are not possible doesn't mean they aren't. i never said to not eat gluten free i was seeing if its possible to heal and eat normally once again because I BELIEVE that celiac disease and gluten intolerance are two different things. i believe celiac disease is permanent and gluten intolerance is developed by leaky gut, intestinal inflammation, etc. i don't really care to make sure all my grammar is perfect on a celiac website. you can make fun of a 21 year old all day and night apparently but at least im trying to do something good with my life and I've studied my butt off in high school i had prom less nights so i could help people. but if my patients are all going to be like you, i think id do alot better changing my major to psychology because I'd lose my head. get off your butt and try to do something useful instead making fun of someone who is and maybe go to college for a semester and find out that wikipedia is NOT a reliable site.

Heidi, I think you keep missing my point for some reason and I have tried valiantly to make it clear. I thought you'd find the history of celiac of particular interest. Did you read it? No, you rudely dismissed it from the beginning and scoffed it.

Instead, you chose to focus on the fact it came from wiki. I explained over and over that those citations are valid. I provided other sources with the SAME information in case wiki was not a site you trust.

I also said that as an English Professor myself, I would not accept it as a valid research site alone, but if the information is cross-referenced in another publication, it's acceptable.

You made some major claims about research you have done and I encouraged you to write about it. I am not sure how that sincere suggestion was misinterpreted.

If you read carefully all that I have written, you would see I was trying to offer some information that you might find helpful and interesting.

Sorry if you are upset; but it does not help your case to say what you just said here. No one made fun of you; we suggested you express yourself more clearly so you are credible.

Some question that you are even in medical school, but if you look back earlier in the thread, you will see I have congratulated you for attending.

Skylark has graciously addressed the issue about the gluten intolerance spectrum, so I won't belabor it anymore.

As for the use of "text-speak", I BELIEVE it inappropriate for this forum. Many people --some from all over the world--are trying to learn and discuss topics on here and we need to communicate effectively. I do not care how old anyone is---it is NOT an effective means of communication. JMHO (Just making things light now because clearly, you are missing that part. Humor is not the same as "making fun".)

Best wishes with school. We need better doctors in this country for sure.

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I am Just tired of being brought down. I'm just trying to see if it's possible... But i will give my props to Irish heart! I apologize, but i did check out your sources and i can see where your coming from. I guess in all this midst I am trying to just give myself hope that it can go away :( I just feel that everyone is different and has different opinions. I apologize for my horrible grammar and lazy punctuation and sorry for the attitude I have just had such a rough day! Life can be so stressful. Please, if you find anything new, send me the link or source. I apologize

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As for the use of "text-speak", I BELIEVE it inappropriate for this forum. Many people --some from all over the world--are trying to learn and discuss topics on here and we need to communicate effectively. I do not care how old anyone is---it is NOT an effective means of communication. JMHO (Just making things light now because clearly, you are missing that part. Humor is not the same as "making fun".)

Speaking as a moderator, what IrishHeart said here is very true. Not everybody speaks English as their first language. Many are struggling with the brain fog caused by gluten and are looking for answers. Many are older people who just aren't part of today's "text message" world. We grew up with snail-mail letters written on paper with a pen, and telephones that were wired into the wall and could only handle voice communications. Even at 57, I can grasp most textisms, but deliberately avoid them here. U can C Y if U R 4 clarity. ;)

Edit: Heidi and I were both posting at the same time. I had not seen her post immediately preceding this one when I posted.

Edited by psawyer
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I apologize Kareng i went back and reread some of my things and i got confused as well and Im the one who wrote it! I don't wish to be one of those doctors who assume things. I want to be able to listen to everything a patient has to say. I have had some pretty rude doctors who rush, and i don't want to turn into them! Most everyone has good points. Honestly i don't even want to be in school for this i want to be a therapist. My father is a doctor so he just pushes me to do what he loves, and i get so frustrated. erggg sorry for venting

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I am Just tired of being brought down. I'm just trying to see if it's possible... But i will give my props to Irish heart! I apologize, but i did check out your sources and i can see where your coming from. I guess in all this midst I am trying to just give myself hope that it can go away :( I just feel that everyone is different and has different opinions. I apologize for my horrible grammar and lazy punctuation and sorry for the attitude I have just had such a rough day! Life can be so stressful. Please, if you find anything new, send me the link or source. I apologize

Apology accepted on my part! Your typing is so much easier to read this way. Life IS stressful, particularly school, and you'll find tremendous support on this board. We just like to be treated well, like everyone else. B)

Your celiac will probably not go away if you are positive for antibodies and villous atrophy, although I do believe that you are trying the right things. You might give that desensitization case study a glance, but if you try it in ten years, be ultra careful. You could make yourself very ill. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16388719 My wrecked thyroid is evidence that gluten is no joke. I had a childhood "wheat allergy", started eating wheat again as an adolescent, and didn't figure out it was making me sick until my mid 30s. By then, the damage was done.

What WILL happen for sure is that you will get used to the diet and wheat will gradually cease to even look like food. At this point, after six years gluten-free, the diet is complete habit and I don't even worry about it most of the time. You will be a great doctor for celiacs, because so many of us do not get any compassion from doctors who put us on the diet. You'll be appalled if you take the time to read people's stories around here.

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I understand. See what i am confused about though is my antibodies were normal. I was reading earlier that several things can cause villi damage. Candida, leaky gut, and the gluten intolerance. Now, i read this on a few internet sites so i don't know if that's exactly true. Does anyone know of other causes of villi damage?

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Hey Heidi!

I have an 18 yr old son I had to get on last year for the lack of clarity in his emails. He was team captain of a robotics team and got frustrated when no one knew what he meant & didn't follow his instruction. He now sends he mails in full sentences. Sometimes I don't know what his texts say. Usually they just want money or me to mail him something at college.

There are MDs that are therapists & psychiatrists. Maybe you could go that direction.

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Does anyone know of other causes of villi damage?

Damage to the villi can also be caused by:

Tropical sprue;

Giardiasis ("beaver fever");

exposure to high levels of radiation;

alcohol abuse.

However, the most common cause by far is celiac disease. The pathologist's examination of the biopsied tissue should identify the cause.

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Haha it's okay! I like criticism! If i can speak proper English, i should be able to type it too! I would like to go into psychology. That's my field of interest

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Hmm that's interesting. I should call my doctor as well and clarify with him what my biopsy exactly showed. All he told me was to try a gluten free diet. Not really a diagnosis o.O

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Hmm that's interesting. I should call my doctor as well and clarify with him what my biopsy exactly showed. All he told me was to try a gluten free diet. Not really a diagnosis o.O

If you feel better off gluten, the usual thing to get a definitive diagnosis is to repeat the biopsy in a year or two gluten-free. If the atrophy is gone you have strong evidence for seronegative celiac.

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Well the thing is the only way i start feeling better is if my diet contains mostly of rice and steamed vegetables. I can't handle alot of other things. But maybe i just need time to heal before i can experiment with more gluten free foods. I have had my eye on gluten free chocolate cake mix i have found at the store.

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I am Just tired of being brought down. I'm just trying to see if it's possible... But i will give my props to Irish heart! I apologize, but i did check out your sources and i can see where your coming from. I guess in all this midst I am trying to just give myself hope that it can go away :( I just feel that everyone is different and has different opinions. I apologize for my horrible grammar and lazy punctuation and sorry for the attitude I have just had such a rough day! Life can be so stressful. Please, if you find anything new, send me the link or source. I apologize

It's okay, Heidi. :)

Life is indeed stressful at times.

Hon, if you are dealing with celiac, it is best for you to accept the diagnosis. It does not "go away", but it goes into remission on a gluten free diet--and that is good news! Please read about it and understand it as best you can, then live a long and healthy life.

Knowledge is power, kiddo! ;)

Best wishes.

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Honestly i don't even want to be in school for this i want to be a therapist. My father is a doctor so he just pushes me to do what he loves, and i get so frustrated. erggg sorry for venting

Totally none of my business, but in my opinion, NO ONE should ever do what someone else wants them to do. It will only make you miserable.

Do what you love in life, kiddo! It's the only way to live. :)

You are an enthusiastic young woman. Have a good life!

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Thank you Heidi. It's so much easier to follow you now. :)

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Hmm that's interesting. I should call my doctor as well and clarify with him what my biopsy exactly showed. All he told me was to try a gluten free diet. Not really a diagnosis o.O

Sounds like you should get a copy of all your recent blood tests - celiac and other. You should get a copy of your pathology report from your endoscopy. And just for fun, a copy of the procedure report. Call and politely tell them what you need. Do not demand it today. The people who do that job get $1 over minimum wage. You can offer to pick it up and would 2 days from now be good? Or would they mail to you? If they give you any crap or want to charge you $25 for the copies, let me know ( pm me). I have a few tricks.

Actually, did you say your dad was a doc? If they give you nonsense, let him request the copies ( or , even better, one of the docs in his practice that has a different last name.) You will need to fill out a release of info form.

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I will definitely do that. Is celiac disease an allergy to gluten? Because people can be allergic to strawberries and if you just don't eat them your fine. Wouldn't gluten be like the same thing?

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question though- I have found some evidence to the claim that antibiotics can cause damaged villi. Here is one of the sites: http://www.phmiracleliving.com/t-faq-probiotics.aspx I just have a strong feeling that i don't have celiac disease. I just don't get why- Maybe im just too hopeful

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Heidi, I just want to say I'm sorry you got of to a rough start here but am glad that seems to be blowing over. I think aiming for healing leaky gut really is the way to go. If you decide to reintroduce gluten in a few years I'd encourage you to get tested regularly in case you are experiencing continued damage without feeling it.

As for other causes, I'm on my phone so I'm not checking sources but I do think I recall reading that soy can cause it and that there are a couple other rare conditions.

It is worth looking into, since of course if there is another condition you'd want that to be diagnosed. However, the biopsy is considered diagnostic of celiac.

I understand the need to believe you can get out of this diagnosis... I think that's the bargaining stage of grief talking. I do think there is a grieving process with a diagnosis like this. There is always hope for healing completely but I think it can be better to set a goal for feeling good and finding a new way to eat rather than an eventual return to the way you used to be able to eat. Actually, even a goal of eventual total healing will probably set you on that path to a new lifestyle and healthier diet that you may find you don't want to give up once you do feel great!

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I will definitely do that. Is celiac disease an allergy to gluten? Because people can be allergic to strawberries and if you just don't eat them your fine. Wouldn't gluten be like the same thing?

Absolutely not. It's a completely different immune response than allergy. Celiac disease is an autoimmune condition that is triggered by eating gluten. Get off gluten, and the autoimmunity resolves. It's the only autoimmune condition with a clear external trigger so it's being studied very carefully in the hope that it will give clues to other autoimmmune disorders. The villous atrophy is caused by T-lymphocytes that have been directed to attack the intestinal mucosa. Autoimmunity is not limited to the intestine; it can be in any tissue with transglutaminase. Some people get neurological autoimmunity resulting in peripheral neuropathy or ataxia, and some get skin autoimmunity, resulting in dermatitis herpetiformis.

A round of diarrhea from eating gluten is no fun, but the lingering neurological damage is what scares us all so badly. Your gut can heal easily. If you keep eating gluten and get nervous system problems, that's much harder to fix.

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I understand. See what i am confused about though is my antibodies were normal. I was reading earlier that several things can cause villi damage. Candida, leaky gut, and the gluten intolerance. Now, i read this on a few internet sites so i don't know if that's exactly true. Does anyone know of other causes of villi damage?

False negatives on blood tests are not uncommon especially if they only do a partial panel or have not checked to see if you are IGA deficient. There are quite a few of us who suffered for years and years and were repeatedly blood test negative and told we had IBS. Your lucky in that you were able to get an endo even with a negative blood test result. You can be celiac, and even close to death like I was, and still have negative blood tests. A strict trial of the diet is recommended even if both biopsy and blood are negative because testing misses so many of us. In the end the diet followed strictly will often give the answer.

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    • Hello Anonymous, and if nobody has said as much yet, welcome Don't worry (difficult to do when it can cause anxiety :P) it's very early days and you have a lot of healing to come.  If you've not already seen it there's advice and further info here:    It gets easier over time as checking becomes routine, you know your 'safe' products and your eating pattern changes. You'll get there  Maybe start a thread of your own if you'd like some input from others? Finally, back on topic. My Aunt has narcolepsy and although she's fiercely resistant to giving up gluten she has now made a connnection to eating bread and it's onset. As often, not conclusive but suggestive...
    • Hello again   Well first thing is the - Usual disclaimers apply... and this is something you have to follow up with your doctors as you know. But it's helpful sometimes to get another perspective so here's this layman see's from outside.  What I have seen from the various results posted here is that people's numbers vary wildly and, just as important, the numbers often don't bear any direct relationship to the level of intestinal damage revealed via endoscopy. Ultimately although you're not scoring much above positive, you are scoring a positive  and there are a couple of other risk factors you've mentioned that are suggestive if not conclusive - you have another autoimmune which raises the odds of having another one for example.  You've had two tests that are positive. The purpose of taking the second test was either to invalidate or confirm the first. I'd suggest it's achieved the latter, at least inasmuch as a GI may want to check you via endoscopy. That's still the 'gold standard' of celiac diagnosis and would give you an idea if there's any intestinal damage. I suspect with 2 positive tests and the history above that's what they'll suggest.  If your doctor or GI doesn't want to proceed with that you have a decision to make. Push for a second opinion or new doctor or if you're done with testing give the gluten free diet a proper try. Make a journal and see if some of those subtle things you reference may actually be symptoms. Fwiw, there are a lot of people here whose thyroid issues improved dramatically once they were gluten free, so whether celiac or gluten sensitive you should certainly give the diet a try. Only however once the testing is completed and remember: 
    • Hi! I've just been recently diagnosed as Celiac through the whole biopsy-shebang, and I have a little bit of insight on the whole diagnosis thing and how I was eventually diagnosed, and my advice for you. Brace yourself, this might be a bit long, but it might be worth the read and I promise I will eventually get to the point. If you don't want the huge story, skip to the long line of capital As: I first saw my doctor when I had a few problems swallowing. I've compared it to when you're nervous and you feel like you have a lump in your throat - but after I eat and (sometimes) drink. I just mentioned briefly it to my family doctor when I was addressing another issue, but right away he referred me to a gastroenterologist and ordered a barium swallow x-ray test. The x-ray came back completely normal, and so the g.e. then suspected GERD, put me on acid blockers to see if they would work, no harm done sort of thing. The only thing I got out of the acid blockers were the side effects, so it was back to square 1. The g.e. said that the next test he could do was an upper endoscopy with biopsies. (hint: the celiac test!) Wanting to find a solution to my problems, the endoscopy was scheduled. Pretty painless, I was in and out in a day, but the results took much much longer. Biopsies, or the little pieces of my esophagus, stomach, and small intestine, were sent to the lab, and they came back clean. I didn't really go back to the g.e. for a whole year after that because life became busy, I wasn't prompted to follow up, and I just dismissed the swallowing problems the best I could and went on my way. Now, I've never been huge on the gluten, big bread-y sandwiches or croissants or pies were never foods that I super "enjoyed". I wouldn't feel bad after eating them, I just didn't like the taste of bread so much, but I loved cookies, cake and a lot of other things that do have gluten in them. I lead a lowish gluten life but I wasn't really monitoring it that way. Everything changed when I got really nasty (systemic) poison ivy. My eyes were swollen shut, and the rash was everywhere. I almost went to the hospital, but cooped out at the family doctor's place and got a script for prednisone (a steroid). But, I found that after I had tapered off the steroids, I had magically become lactose intolerant. So back to the family doctor again probably because I broke my toe or something, but we also got to talk about this magical lactose intolerance business (because I love anything dairy and it was indeed devastating). He was surprised as there is literally no correlation between steroids and becoming lactose intolerant. He asked me if I still had the swallowing problems, which I did, and so it was back to the g.e. for round 3. because my family doctor "does not believe in coincidences". Meeting with the G.E., he mainly addressed the swallowing problems telling me that he had done what he could to diagnose with the technology that we had at the highly specialized hospital that we were at, and I would have to travel about 3 hours away to see a different doctor who would do some tests involving the muscles in the esophagus. But right before I was about to leave, we started talking about lactose intolerance. He brought up other foods that I was avoiding (if any), and then the conversation went to gluten. I mentioned that I had an aunt that was gluten-sensitive. He advised that I do the blood test that can show an indication of celiac whenever in the future. I decided to do it that day. At this point in time, I was not eating much gluten because of the fact that it was personal preference. The normal range for values in this test is from 0 to 20. A few weeks later, I learned that I scored a 35. A second upper endoscopy with biopsies was scheduled, but this time I was told to eat a moderate amount of gluten everyday before the procedure. I ate about two slices of bread per day, which is more than I normally would. I was normal for the first two-three weeks of the gluten plus diet, but then I became really sick. I started getting the normal celiac symptoms, like diarrhea and extreme tiredness. Near the end, I had debilitating stomach pain and I was 2 times more asleep than awake each day. I couldn't do the 2 pieces of bread a day some days, but the pain was still there. I knew that I wouldn't ever have to force myself to eat bread for a test ever again. I was called a few days before my endoscopy telling me that a kid in a worse state than me had to take the OR during my time. I forced myself to eat more bread for another month and a half. The day finally came. I was diagnosed celiac, which I have concluded to be initiated by (1) the steroids/poison ivy and (2) the gluten binge fest.  AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA Celiac Disease isn't completely understood yet. Most of the time if you weren't showing symptoms when you were a baby (so your case) it means that celiac was/could be triggered by an event in your life that causes stress on the body (like stress, physical injury, etc.).  The positive result that you got from the blood test doesn't automatically mean celiac, but it could. Here's some options: Talk to your doctor (or a different doctor) or even a specialist gastroenterologist (you can get a referral from a family doctor (general physician)) and see if you can do the blood test again, you have to have some kind of gluten for this to work in advance, so if you don't want to break your gluten-free streak, than don't really invest in this option. If you feel comfortable, you could even ask to do this test under a few scenarios (no gluten (now) and after a gluten binge, compare results). If you do this test and your indication is low off gluten and then high after gluten, I'd probably skip the biopsy. That's a strong enough sign that you don't need to put yourself through the painful-gluten binge. Maybe this is what that first doctor just assumed. But having that test when you haven't had any gluten could make the difference - it acts as a control. Go straight to the biopsy. You could do this, but I'd probably do the blood test first. I went through a lot of stress with the gluten-binge that you have to do to get an accurate result, you would also be breaking your gluten-free diet that may/may not be helping you right now. Do nothing, stay on your gluten free diet hoping that it is helping you. But if you are not celiac or gluten-sensitive (celiac before it starts to wreck your small intestine), going gluten free isn't healthy - you can do some research on this if it interests you. If you feel bad/unhealthy after going gluten free it's probably a sign. Good luck, also know that you might come to a point of stress in your life that can start celiac's destructive path. Ultimately, it is your body, and you should not feel forced or hesitate to act on health issues that impact you.
    • I'm sorry that life is so hard right now. Really.  I can't imagine working 3 jobs and trying to manage this terrible illness.  I think about American society and their obsession with food often.  Whenever you look at the internet, there are all these fabulous gluten-free recipes, but when you don't have time or money to cook these things, a simple gluten-free lifestyle is just that - simple. There isn't a lot of variety, so it's kind of boring. But, I guess I have gotten used to being boring. I just eat corn chex and fruit or yogurt for breakfast. I eat a lot of eggs, beans, rice, corn tortillas, nuts, chicken, fruit and veggies.  A loaf of gluten-free bread will last me 4-6 months in the freezer.  I buy a bag of dried beans for $1.29, I soak them overnight, and put them in the crockpot the next day. I add different spices, sometimes chicken and Voila! - dinner is ready when I get home from a long day. Family gatherings are miserable and I haven't quite figured out the best way to deal yet. If my grandmother were still alive, I imagine she would be a lot like yours - well-meaning but not really able to understand the nitty-gritty.   I just reassure my family that I am fine and that they really shouldn't do anything special for me. I bring a bag of Hershey's kisses or other gluten-free candy I can nibble on along with my meal and then I try to treat myself to a nicer home cooked meal later in the week when I have time to cook - because who has time to cook during Christmas???? And, I agree with knitty knitty. If someone else in your family/friends were gluten-free for medical reasons, it would make socializing a bit easier. One of my husband's good friends is NCGS. When we get together as a group, we can make each other special dishes and it helps to feel less isolated.  Good luck!  
    • Hi!  Um, please forgive my quirky sense of humor..... Celiac Disease is genetic... All first degree relatives of people diagnosed with Celiac Disease should be tested for the disease, too.  Gall bladder problems are often associated with Celiac Disease.  Your diagnosis might save your whole family from further medical problems as they age and the disease progresses... You need to set a good example if relatives are similarly diagnosed.... and then everybody will have to eat gluten free at family gatherings....  
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