KPSA

What is Celiac Disease?

Celiac Disease is an autoimmune disorder in which the small intestine is damaged and attacked. When people with celiac disease eat foods containing gluten, their immune system responds by damaging the finger-like villi of the small intestine.

  • WHAT IS GLUTEN?

Gluten is a protein that’s found in food, mainly in (wheat, barley, rye, oats …. etc.) Gluten is the only protein found in food that is completely indigestible. Its indestructible molecules can slip through the intestinal lining and cause inflammation in the intestines of people with celiac disease. In healthy people, the inside of the small intestine is lined with finger-like projections called villi that help the body absorb nutrients.

  • WHAT DOES GLUTEN DO TO PEOPLE WITH CELIAC DISEASE?

In people with celiac disease, gluten irritates the lining of the small intestine and also causes the immune system to attack the villi. This often means that the body can no longer absorb enough nutrients from food, (vitamins, minerals, proteins, carbohydrates)

  • WHERE DOES IT OCCUR?

It occurs in duodenum; the duodenum is the first and shortest segment of the small intestine. It receives partially digested food (known as chyme) from the stomach. Plays a vital role in the chemical digestion of chyme in preparation for absorption in the small intestine.

  • WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF CELIAC DISEASE?

There are more than 300 symptoms of celiac disease, and symptoms can be different from person to person. The signs and symptoms of celiac disease can vary greatly and are different in children and adults.

 The most common signs for adults are:

 1- Diarrhea

 2- Fatigue

 3- Tooth Loss

 4- Weight Loss.

 5- Adults May Also Experience Abdominal Pain, Nausea, And Vomiting

  • HOW DOES THE DISEASE DEVELOP?

All individuals who develop celiac are born with a genetic predisposition for the disease, but the age of onset can vary from infancy to old age.

Note: (Some people are diagnosed at birth or during childhood, but in many people, the disease lies dormant until it is triggered later in life.) Celiac disease can affect men and women of all ages and races and in fact it occurs more in women than men. In fact, women in the general population are diagnosed with celiac disease two to three times more often than men.

  • HOW TO DIAGNOSE THE DISEASE?

Doctors use two blood tests to help determine whether you have celiac disease: serology tests that look for certain antibodies genetic testing to look for human leukocyte antigens to rule out celiac disease.

  • WHAT IS THE TREATMENT OF CELIAC DISEASE?

The only treatment for celiac disease is to follow a gluten-free diet—that is, to avoid all foods that contain gluten. For most people, following this diet will stop symptoms, heal existing intestinal damage, and prevent further damage. … Eating any gluten, no matter how small an amount, can damage the small intestine. in the vast majority of cases, celiac disease is not fatal in the way we normally think of fatal diseases—it won’t progress and ultimately kill you. However Celiac disease that doesn’t respond to the gluten-free diet can progress to a particularly deadly type of lymphoma.

RESOURCES

livescience/celiac disease
webmed/celiac disease
medlineplus.gov/celiacdisease

Sahand Soran

Sahand Soran

Chairperson of Media and Publications