Diagnosis of coeliac diseaseIf you are experiencing any of the symptoms of coeliac disease, it is important that you make an appointment to see your doctor to confirm diagnosis. If your doctor suspects that you have coeliac disease, the first step in the diagnosis process is for them to undertake a simple blood test to screen for coeliac antibodies.
|The first step is to undertake a simple blood test.|
If the result is positive for coeliac antibodies, the next stage of the diagnosis process is to be referred to a gastroenterologist for a further test, known as a biopsy. A biopsy takes a small tissue sample from the lining of your small intestine, which the gastroenterologist will view under a microscope. They will then be able to determine whether your villi is normal, or shows signs of coeliac disease.
Please note, it is important to continue on a gluten containing diet prior to and during the tests for diagnosis of coeliac disease to ensure that all test results are accurate and diagnosis is confirmed. If you have removed gluten from your diet beforehand consult your doctor for advice about reintroducing gluten to be tested.
What is coeliac disease? Coeliac disease is an autoimmune condition brought on by an intolerance to gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye*.
Is coeliac disease genetic? There is a genetic element to coeliac disease which makes certain individuals more susceptible to the condition than others.
What is dermatitis herpetiformis? Dermatitis Herpetiformis (DH) is a skin condition caused by an intolerance to gluten and is considered as the skin ‘symptom’ of coeliac disease.
What are the symptoms of coeliac disease? Coeliac disease has a wide range of symptoms but if you are at all affected by tiredness, anaemia, diarrhoea, abdominal discomfort, weight loss, vomiting and mouth ulcers then this may be an indication that you have coeliac disease.
What is the treatment for coeliac disease? Coeliac disease is a life long condition, treated by excluding gluten from your diet. With this treatment, you should feel better in a short space of time and remain so for the rest of your life.
If I have coeliac disease do I need to avoid wheat? If you have coeliac disease you are intolerant to gluten, so you should follow a gluten free diet to help your small intestine recover and absorb the nutrients you need from food.
Codex wheat starch A number of gluten free foods contain Codex wheat starch, which has had the gluten washed out to a trace level so is considered safe for people with coeliac disease
Support for those living with coeliac disease For those people who have been diagnosed and don’t have a friend or family member suffering coeliac disease it can be quite scary.
Coeliac disease and osteoporosis Osteoporosis is a thinning of bones which makes them more fragile and prone to breaking following a small fall or bump.
Coeliac disease and diabetes There is a proven link between type 1 diabetes and coeliac disease, with people with type 1 diabetes being more likely to develop a sensitivity to gluten.
Coeliac disease and pregnancy Pregnancy is an important time during which women with coeliac disease should be regularly followed up.