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Old 09-08-2005, 09:02 PM   #1
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m02ro3mommy HB User
Celiac Testing

Last week I had my toddler (22 months) tested for Celiac's Disease. However, because he has an eczema sensitivity to wheat from birth his wheat consumption has been minimal. He has maybe a serving a week along with oatmeal once or twice a week since 12 months. Will this affect the blood test?

TIA

Colleen

 
Old 09-08-2005, 10:41 PM   #2
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rheanna HB Userrheanna HB User
Re: Celiac Testing

Quote:
Originally Posted by m02ro3mommy
Last week I had my toddler (22 months) tested for Celiac's Disease. However, because he has an eczema sensitivity to wheat from birth his wheat consumption has been minimal. He has maybe a serving a week along with oatmeal once or twice a week since 12 months. Will this affect the blood test?

TIA

Colleen
Colleen,

I can't say for sure, as I'm not a doctor. My assumption (worthless in this case, I know ) is that he has been given gluten regularly enough to maintain his antibody levels, meaning that the test will probably show up positive. There are many ways that intolerance to gluten can show up, and a skin reaction (exzema) is one of them. I noticed on another post (in digestive problems board?) that you said that your son has stopped growing. If his small intestine has been damaged by his body's reaction to wheat, then he is not absorbing nutrients properly. But it looks like you have researched things enough to know this.

Please keep in mind that some of us have found out through careful observation of our diets that gluten is a problem. By the time I found a doctor who was willing to believe me and give me the tests, I had been off gluten for many months, and all tests (blood tests as well as inspection of my upper intestines) showed nothing. So, I am self-diagnosed, but I maintain my diet as though I had an official diagnosis.

What I mean is, even if the tests for your son come back negative for celiac, you have already noticed that his body reacts negatively to it (exzema). My advice (worth only two cents, I know!) is to maintain an entirely gluten-free diet for him. Regular assaults on his system of foods that cause him to react will not allow his body to "relax" and develop a strong immune system.

At any rate, good luck on tracing down the cause of his problems!

--Rheanna

 
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Old 09-08-2005, 11:55 PM   #3
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m02ro3mommy HB User
Re: Celiac Testing

Rheanna:

If he has a gluten-intolerance rather than official Celiacs do you believe that it possible that in time and with a strengthening of his digestive system that he might over come the problems with wheat or do you think that even a sensitivity will be life-long?

Thank you for your quick response

Colleen

 
Old 09-09-2005, 08:14 AM   #4
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rheanna HB Userrheanna HB User
Re: Celiac Testing

Quote:
Originally Posted by m02ro3mommy
Rheanna:

If he has a gluten-intolerance rather than official Celiacs do you believe that it possible that in time and with a strengthening of his digestive system that he might over come the problems with wheat or do you think that even a sensitivity will be life-long?

Thank you for your quick response

Colleen
Colleen,

I don't know if anybody knows for sure whether one who is merely sensitive to gluten (and not a full blown celiac) can dampen the reaction to gluten by avoiding it for a period of time. I would guess that during childhood one would be especially sensitive to developing allergies or sensitivities because the body is changing so much and hasn't yet developed a strong immune system. The literature I have read indicate that some people with childhood intolerance seem to "outgrow" their reactions to gluten -- that is, they don't react years later when they are adults. Because people don't regularly get antibody blood tests and have that icky tube down the throat (I had to be tranquilized to dampen my natural reaction to gag and push the tube away!), I don't think the data is really there to say for sure.

If you try to keep your son's diet as gluten-free as possible, it may be that as an older teen or as an adult he may be able to have an OCCASIONAL treat (no oftener than once a month in my opinion). The problem is that the symptoms are not always visible. If his body reacts by damaging some portion of his small intestine, it may take a while before the nutritional deficiencies show up -- that is, if he resumes the typical western diet of lots of wheat.

There are at least a couple of people on these boards who maintain that gluten is the causes of most of the diseases of modern humans, even among people who show no symptoms of gluten intolerance. You'll run across them as you peruse these boards. I tend not to believe that so many diseases can be blamed on one particular food among so many people, and I can only speak for (and make decisions for) myself. I was in my late forties when I found out about celiac (searching for reasons for my painful acid indigestion) and decided to eliminate it from my diet. I have now had several years of living gluten-free, with VERY occasional adulterations (a few crumbs) now and then. My body seems to have settled down and no longer reacts so strongly. I am assuming that if I found myself in a situation where there REALLY was no other option for keeping my blood sugar stable, I could eat whatever was available, wheat or not, and my body would be ok for a while until I could return to a diet of my choice. I guess my ramblings are leading me to say that a person who did not have full blown celiac could conceivably have OCCASIONAL gluten without the body ramping up a defense against it. As to whether he would actually outgrow it, only time will tell. But I'm inclined to doubt it.

--Rheanna

 
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