Joseph Murray, M. D., discusses a recently published journal article in the American Journal of Gastroenterology about the diagnosis difference between celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity.
The article, published by two different centers in Boston, examines and tries to differentiate between celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity in over 200 patients. The patients examined had incomplete or no testing before going on a gluten free diet.
The results the authors found were interesting and constructive. Patients who had symptoms of malabsorption, deficient in certain nutrients, a family history of celiac disease or autoimmune disease were much more likely to have celiac disease than patients who lacked any of those features. Another strong indicator of celiac disease was a positive blood test result in patients who had some blood testing for celiac disease before going on a gluten-free diet. Patients who lacked those features or the antibody tests were less likely to have celiac disease.
The authors also point out the usefulness of genetic testing in patients who have some of the features of celiac disease or blood tests that are borderline or weak positive. Genetic testing might be helpful in selecting those patients who need further testing. This points out the importance of being tested for celiac disease before going on a gluten-free diet. It is easier to test and make sure the right tests are completed to confirm or rule out celiac disease before trying a gluten-free diet.
Read the full article online here.
For more information on celiac disease, visit mayoclinic.org/celiacdisease.
Dr. Murray is a gastroenterologist and celiac disease expert at Mayo Clinic.