Celiac disease affects about 1% of Americans today. At The Gastroenterology Group, the dedicated board-certified gastroenterologists understand how uncomfortable and frustrating the symptoms of celiac disease can be, so they’re ready to help. Call the Akron, Ohio, office now or click on the online scheduling link to take your first step towards celiac diagnosis and treatment.
Celiac disease is a digestive disease causing inflammation of the small intestine and problems with nutrient absorption. People with celiac disease develop these problems when they eat gluten — a specific protein in grains like wheat, rye, and barley.
Although oats, corn, and rice don’t contain gluten, they’re often processed in the same facilities that process gluten-containing grains. For that reason, people with celiac disease often experience the same problems when they eat these grains.
If you have celiac disease, eating gluten-containing foods triggers an immune system reaction. This reaction causes inflammation, damaging the small intestine lining, which prevents you from efficiently absorbing nutrients.
When you eliminate gluten from your diet, inflammation lessens, and your small intestine lining starts to heal.
Celiac disease causes a broad spectrum of symptoms, but the most common include:
Each person will experience different symptoms, which can change over time.
Celiac disease symptoms are frequently similar to those of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), Crohn’s disease, diverticulitis, ulcerative colitis, and other gastrointestinal disorders and diseases. Because of this, diagnosis involves looking for specific signs of celiac disease and ruling out other causes of your symptoms.
The most common tests are antibody blood tests, including endomysial antibody and tissue transglutaminase tests. If the blood tests aren’t clear, some people need genetic tests to help verify a celiac disease diagnosis.
If your blood tests show that you have celiac disease, you’ll then have either an upper endoscopy or a capsule endoscopy to confirm the diagnosis.
If you have celiac disease, you must strictly follow a gluten-free diet. The Gastroenterology Group can help you successfully implement a gluten-free diet. It will probably take some effort and time to learn a new way of eating, but feeling better is well worth it.
If you have severe vitamin deficiencies, you’ll need specific supplements. For severe intestinal inflammation, you could be prescribed oral steroids. The steroids decrease inflammation as your small intestine lining heals, which eases the symptoms.
If you have gastrointestinal symptoms and are concerned about celiac disease, call The Gastroenterology Group now or book an appointment using the provided scheduling link.