A Guide to The Symptoms of Celiac Disease

Celiac disease symptoms are varied and are usually similar to symptoms of other medical conditions which can make celiac difficult to diagnose. The condition can manifest itself at any point in one’s lifetime from infancy to adulthood and is sometime associated with other conditions such as diabetes.

Overview of Celiac Disease

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease that causes a reaction when one consumes food containing gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye, barley, and sometimes oats if they have been exposed to wheat. The cause of celiac disease is unknown, although it appears to have a genetic basis. In autoimmune diseases, the body is essentially attacked by its own immune system. In celiac disease, the immune system damages or destroys the villa, hair-like projections in the small intestines that absorb nutrients.

Celiac Symptoms

Celiac symptoms include diarrhea, abdominal bloating, constipation, anaemia and weight loss. These are the classic symptoms of celiac and most are chronic. Children often suffer from stunted growth, failure to gain weight and malnourishment. Weight loss results from the inability of the body to absorb nutrition, and many of the other symptoms result from the fermentation of undigested food, or the toxic effect of celiac. Other celiac symptoms are less obviously connected to the disease and are often referred to as latent symptoms. These symptoms include chronic fatigue, osteoporosis (caused by the inability to absorb calcium and Vitamin D), migraine headaches, tingling hands or feet, joint pain, depression, dental problems, infertility, delayed onset of puberty, muscle cramps, mouth sores, skin rash, irritability, an upset stomach and foul-smelling stools.

Prevalence of Celiac Symptoms

The prevalence and severity of celiac disease symptoms vary from person to person. Some people may suffer severe and chronic symptoms while others experience only mild and intermittent symptoms. In fact, some people with celiac disease have no readily apparent symptoms of the condition at all. Sometimes the disease affects another organ, such as the liver, instead of the small intestine. Thus, this is a difficult condition to diagnose. Unfortunately, there is no cure for this illness, but celiac disease symptoms can be completely eliminated by removing gluten from the diet.

Comments are closed.