• Appointment With Specialist
  • Treatment
  • Scan
  • All Specialties
  • Location

Coeliac Disease

Coeliac Disease

Coeliac disease is an autoimmune disease that mostly affects part of the gut called the small intestine. It is caused by a reaction between gluten and the cells lining the small intestine, resulting in inflammation. It affects approximately 1 in 100 people in the UK and can affect anyone at any age. It is commonly diagnosed in those aged between 50 and 69. Coeliac disease can often run in families and is also more common in those who suffer from another autoimmune disease.

What are the symptoms of Coeliac Disease?

The inflammation of the small intestine means that food and nutrients cannot be properly absorbed. This causes a number of symptoms. In babies symptoms develop when the baby is weaned onto food containing gluten. The baby may not gain weight or grow properly and have gastro – intestinal symptoms such as diarrhoea, pale/ bulky stools, swollen abdomen and vomiting. In children the symptoms may be similar to those in a baby. Vitamin and iron deficiencies can cause anaemia and other symptoms. Diarrhoea may be present and the faeces may be pale and difficult to flush. In adults other common symptoms include: bloating, diarrhoea and tiredness. Weight loss may occur in severe cases.

A blood test can be done to detect a certain antibody that causes coeliac disease. If this is positive you may be referred to a gastroenterologist for a biopsy of the small intestine to be taken. Other tests include a blood test for anaemia (low iron).

What are the causes of Coeliac Disease?

The cause of coeliac disease is sensitivity to gluten. Gluten is found in wheat, rye and barley and is therefore found in common foods such as bread, cereal and pasta. Antibodies are made against gluten in the immune system of coeliac disease sufferers. These antibodies attack the lining of the small intestine and lead to inflammation.

How is Coeliac Disease treated?

The main and most common treatment for coeliac disease is a gluten-free diet for the rest of your life. The symptoms usually go within a few weeks on this treatement. A gluten free diet is a diet that excludes wheat, barely and rye. A dietician should give you advice on what foods to avoid and what foods are acceptable. In addition to a gluten free diet you may be advised to take nutritional supplements such as iron, vitamins and calcium for the first 6 months after diagnosis. This is to replace any deficiencies until the gut lining returns to normal.

Disclaimer

This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. Doctify Limited has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but makes no warranty as to its accuracy. Consult a doctor or other health care professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. In the event of an emergency, please call 999 for immediate assistance.

Top Results

Professor Laurence Lovat
Professor Laurence Lovat
GastroenterologyGastroenterology
1.25 miles
Dr Evangelos Russo
Dr Evangelos Russo
GastroenterologyGastroenterology
1.25 miles
Dr David Graham
Dr David Graham
GastroenterologyGastroenterology
1.25 miles
Dr Rishi Goel
Dr Rishi Goel
GastroenterologyGastroenterology
8.25 miles
Dr Markus Gess
Dr Markus Gess
GastroenterologyGastroenterology
8.25 miles
Dr Ben Hope
Dr Ben Hope
GastroenterologyGastroenterology
3.25 miles
Dr Sudeep Tanwar
Dr Sudeep Tanwar
GastroenterologyGastroenterology
3.75 miles
Dr Simona Di Caro
Dr Simona Di Caro
GastroenterologyGastroenterology
8.25 miles
Dr Anthony Lerman
Dr Anthony Lerman
GastroenterologyGastroenterology
2.75 miles
Dr Mohamed Shariff
Dr Mohamed Shariff
GastroenterologyGastroenterology
12.50 miles

Top Clinics and Hospitals where specialists perform Coeliac Disease