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  1. I take Enterolab with a grain of salt, honestly, but I was positive on that and negative on my blood test and the only thing I know for sure is how sick I get immediately after eating gluten. (Too sick to even go on a gluten challenge in order to get a biopsy).

    My symptoms are mostly physical, however, I get MAJOR ANXIETY when I eat gluten. Usually right afterwards. I also have been less depressed since I went gluten-free.

    Yeah, I don't know for sure exactly what's really going on... but I've been reading some very good books, and one, "Going Against the Grain" (Melissa Smith) says that NOBODY should really be eating gluten. Human beings have only been eating it for the past 10,000 years. We really didn't evolve to digest it. (Or if someone doesn't believe in evolution, Adam and Eve didn't eat it in the garden, you know. ;) So it's possible to have sensitivity to it without anything showing up on a test (according to her theories, anyway.) I'm thinking about doing a very strict diet for a month, and then re-introducing things. At the absolute least, it can't hurt!

  2. Thanks for all the replies, y'all! :)

    If it helps anyone... I'll share what my retinal specialist told me, and this also comes from research I did. Floaters will EVENTUALLY "sink to the bottom," so the situation can actually improve a lot with age. However, almost everyone has them-- it's really a matter of how much we're *noticing* them, and light sensitivity can play a big part in that. I haven't been able to find much specific info on gluten intolerance and photophobia, BUT there's a *lot* about it related to allergies in general. So it makes sense that the gluten problem could cause it, and the poison ivy incident could also play a part. Anyway... I'm getting acupuncture, and it really seems to be helping! :)

  3. Okay, I'm completely serious about being desperate here... hang on while I try to explain.

    I tested positive at Enterolab and negative on blood tests, and I'm going to try a gluten-free diet for a while and then do a challenge. If this is the problem, I feel that it's been kind of lurking around for some time but really got serious this summer. Early this year, I had a horrible amount of anxiety and stress. In June, I had the worst case of poison ivy EVER... covered from head to toe. THEN came another problem. I have a lot of visual floaters because of a car accident. For many years, though, I've been able to "tune them out." Starting about a week after the poison ivy incident, they all became horribly obvious, all the time. I don't think I could describe what hell this can be.

    Well, I finally put two and two together (I'm quick that way!) and realized that about a week BEFORE the poison ivy, I suddenly noticed that I was VERY photophobic. Every light seemed unbearably bright. This hadn't happened before. (At about the same time, my GI symptoms took a real turn for the worse.) The more light sensitive you are, of course, the worse your floaters will seem. That's why so many people with panic disorders notice their floaters-- for whatever reason, they're very light sensitive.

    So my question is, does anyone know anything about a possible link between gluten sensitivity and light sensitivity??? Y'all can't imagine how much I want to know this... please, please, all answers appreciated...

  4. I really appreciate all the responses... I do think I improve on a gluten-free diet, but the thing is that I also have to avoid the OTHER things I'm sensitive to or just going gluten-free doesn't help at all. I'm hoping that maybe after being gluten free for a while I can start re-introducing the other things... I've read that lactose intolerance can be caused by gluten sensitivity and is not necessarily a true intolerance, for instance. Also, my acupuncturist gave me the TCM diet and that REALLY seems to help... (avoiding yin foods like sugar, cold foods, tropical fruit, etc...)

    I just feel like I would be so incredibly relieved to get a firm diagnosis, but it sounds like I may never get one ANYWAY. If an endoscopy was covered by insurance, I wouldn't hesitate, but $2300... (faints again!) My diet has already been so restricted for so long that I honestly don't care a whole lot about also cutting out gluten, if I think it could mean bringing back some of the other stuff later.

  5. In my opinion, if Enterolab was positive and I had to pay that much money for a biopsy, I'd go gluten-free. My bloodwork was borderline positive, I regret my endoscopy (I can elaborate later if you want but it was negative) and gluten DEFINITELY causes mood symptoms in me and MANY of us on the board. In some cases, people have no GI symptoms at all and have skin symptoms (DH) or neuro symptoms.

    Welcome to the board! You'll get a LOT of good info here. I went gluten-free despite questionable bloodwork and a negative biopsy (I was later confirmed through gene testing and a positive diet response). I have NO regrets at all. I a'm not perfectly healthy by any means, but I'm MUCH healthier and much less depressed and anxious than I was 18 months ago.

    Thanks so much for your reply... :)

    Um... what DID happen with the endoscopy you had? I'd really like to know... whatever details you feel comfortable sharing...

  6. i had to have a waver done so my insurecence would pay for it and it was over a 1,000 for the scope and biosy alone

    An endoscopy would be $2300, I was just informed, and my insurance wouldn't cover a cent because I haven't met any of the deductible this year yet. (What good does it do to have them say they'll cover it if it doesn't reach the deductible... mutter, mutter, mutter....) Honestly, is it worth it under these circumstances???

  7. Hi all,

    I'm trying to find out exactly what the diagnosis REALLY is-- Enterolab was positive, bloodwork was negative, and the endoscopy would be $2300, not one CENT of which would be covered by my awful insurance. :angry:

    The thing is that I'm starting to think that gluten causes *mood* symptoms for me rather than digestive/GI. I've been on and off gluten-free diets, and gluten doesn't necessarily cause any GI symptoms at all. But I honestly think it's connected to mood and concentration/ADD-type issues. Is is even possible to be gluten-intolerant and to have those symptoms *without* the GI problems???

  8. I'm not sure if this topic will show up, since I've had some problems posting... but anyway, I just got the results back from Enterolab, and here's what they were:

    Final Laboratory Report

    Date: 10/19/2006

    B) Gluten sensitivity Stool Panel Complete

    Fecal Antigliadin IgA 20 (Normal Range <10 Units)

    Fecal Antitissue Transglutaminase IgA 13 Units (Normal Range <10 Units)

    Quantitative Microscopic Fecal Fat Score 138 Units (Normal Range <300 Units)

    All advice appreciated!

  9. I had problems with candida years ago, and I can tell you that the restricted diet really worked. It has been SEVERAL years since I had any flareups. However, you have to be incredibly strict for a long time. The hardest thing was 100% elimination of ALL sugar and ALL sweeteners of ANY description whatsoever. (Yes, this includes Nutrasweet and sucralose!) After six years of being totally off all sugars, I have been able to add stevia, but that is IT. I really should have gotten off wheat at that time, but I didn't know enough about gluten-free diets then, so... I only figured that part out very recently. I can have fruit now, but that was not true for several years.

    About the lactose issue... well, eating yogurt all the time really helps, but if you really are lactose sensitive, that can cause a problem of its own. I've read that gluten-sensitive people can have a lactose sensitivity that is not a true allergy, but is from the small intestine being damaged by the gluten. After enough time on a gluten-free diet, people might have whatever level of sensitivity to lactose they actually had to begin with. Personally, I've never had a problem with casein or fairly low levels of lactose, although I do a lot better avoiding milk, ricotta, and cream cheese (butter, cream, yogurt, and cheese are okay.) But that's not true of a lot of people.

  10. Floaters can be associated with some autoimmune diseases. I think there's a treatment if they're severe enough.

    I went to see my retinal specialist yesterday, so I can speak to this one!

    It's called... (warning, this is NOT very pleasant...) a vitrectomy. Basically, they suck out the vitreous humor that's in your eye, and it replenishes itself. So the floaters are gone. HOWEVER, there's a small risk of retinal detachment-- EEK! And there's a *side effect* of early cataract development, which everyone gets who's had this done. My doctor said that given enough time, everyone develops cataracts (although nobody on either side of my family has ever noticed them or needed surgery, so obviously this varies.) A vitrectomy speeds the process up. How much? Well, it varies. It could mean twenty years earlier than you would otherwise have them, or it could even mean earlier than that. I'm not exactly sure why. So it's a SERIOUS procedure. It's most appropriate for people who are older, and whose floaters are so severe that it's worth the risks. My doctor said he wouldn't recommend it for me, and he also said that in time the vitreous humor often liquefies, and the floaters fall to the bottom. If you already have posterior vitreous detachments (which I do) getting older can actually help floaters because of this. So I'm HOPING this happens eventually!!!

    But I will say this. Floaters do NOT always look the same-- they can appear dramatically different without the actual floaters themselves changing, and nobody really knows why. I have a lot of floaters, and was able to tune them out for several years. This summer, that changed although the floaters *themselves* were the same (they just became impossible to ignore again.) I wonder if it had something to do with the gluten intolerance getting worse this year, which is what seemed to happen (and what caused me to finally get tested.)

    Anyway, I'm starting acupuncture next week. I'll let y'all know how it turns out!

  11. Thanks for all the replies! :)

    I'll definitely post the results once I get them... it'll be a while, since I just sent off for the test. Does it actually take 3 weeks to get the results back?

    It was a PAIN to spend the money, but I felt that I needed to at least find out. I already have a restricted diet and having to ALSO cut out gluten would be fairly horrifying, so I felt that I had to have some testing done before deciding to do it long term. HOWEVER, I'm at the point where I'll eat one rice cake per day while standing on my head and whistling the 1812 Overture if that's the only thing that will work. :P

    I've done the elimination diet in the past, so I know that identifying and getting rid of problem foods really does work. If this encourages anybody... I used to have terrible candida problems, and since cutting out sugar (and ALL sweeteners except stevia) 100% (which was a long, miserable process,) as well as all caffeine, I have had no flareups in several years.

    Anyway... I'll be sure to keep y'all posted...

  12. Hi all... (waves)

    I'm a brand new newbie! Happy to be here with all y'all. I had a question about the best way to eat before taking the Enterolab tests. I've been on a gluten free diet for just one week and the difference is AMAZING. I just ordered the tests (can't remember exactly which ones... the $250.00 package.) Should I go back to eating gluten right now so that the correct results will be most likely to show up? It says on the Enterolab website that you don't need to, but then I saw somewhere else that you should (for these tests, not talking about the blood tests.)I hate to do it, but if it's necessary I think I'd better. I was certainly eating enough of it before, though!