If you’ve just begun to wonder if you have some form of gluten intolerance, chances are the possibility occurred to you due to a symptom or combination of symptoms. In this article we’ll discuss some of the most common celiac disease symptoms in adults and children as well as give you some idea of the likely treatment options. When you’ve finished reading this article, if you feel the symptoms describe you or someone in your family, it’s important that you see your doctor for a complete diagnosis as soon as possible.
Celiac Symptoms in Adults
One of the tricky things about diagnosing celiac disease is that the symptoms aren’t always the same from person to person. Some of the symptoms include:
- Weight loss
- Nutrient absorption issues such as Anemia
- An extremely itchy rash (also called dermatitis herpetiformis)
- Low protein levels in blood tests
- Low calcium levels in blood tests
- Elevated liver function in blood tests
- Infertility and frequent miscarriages
- Abdominal pain, particularly after consuming gluten
Celiac Symptoms in Children
Celiac disease in children can be a bit harder to diagnose based on symptoms. In infants, doctors can call it a ‘failure to thrive’ which can mean an inability to gain weight or maintain a healthy weight. Celiac symptoms in toddlers can include delayed development and stunted growth as well as any combination of symptoms present on the adult symptom list. If you think that you have witnessed celiac symptoms in a toddler you know, it’s important that they’re tested and diagnosed by a qualified physician as soon as possible as celiac disease can be an extremely serious condition if not treated.
Celiac Disease Diagnosis and Treatment
The best way to be diagnosed is to ask your doctor to perform a series of tests. Blood tests can frequently determine whether or not you have celiac disease. Some doctors also perform a simple intestinal biopsy to confirm the diagnosis. Once diagnosed, the only known treatment is to follow a strict gluten free diet. Some doctors also use a gluten free diet as a diagnosis tool. If a patient sees marked improvement in symptoms after eating no gluten for a length of time, usually 6 months, it’s a good sign that celiac disease is at work.
Celiac disease is a serious condition that can lead to significant health issues and can even be life threatening. Because gluten damages the intestines of those with celiac disease, it can keep nutrients from being absorbed. If you’re concerned that you may have celiac disease, don’t delay. See your doctor as soon as you can so you can get on the road to recovery sooner than later.