celiac

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celiac

 [se´le-ak]
pertaining to the abdomen.
celiac disease a malabsorption syndrome characterized by marked atrophy and loss of function of the villi of the jejunum and occasionally the cecum. A distinction was formerly made between infantile, childhood, and adult forms, but they are now all considered to be the same entity. Called also celiac or nontropical sprue and gluten enteropathy.

The condition is related in some way to dietary gluten and is either a hypersensitive reaction to a protein in certain cereal grains or a local toxic inflammatory reaction to gluten. A hereditary factor has been implicated because the disease occurs in familial clusters. Diagnosis is usually made in young to middle-aged adults, but the onset of symptoms often is traced to early childhood.

The symptoms of celiac disease are fairly typical of all malabsorption syndromes. Manifestations include large, foul-smelling, bulky, frothy, and pale-colored stools containing much fat. There are recurrent attacks of diarrhea, with accompanying stomach cramps, alternating with constipation. There is some edema and abdominal distention as in severe malnutrition, extreme weight loss, asthenia, deficiency of vitamins B, D, and K, and electrolyte depletion.

Diagnosis is based on intestinal biopsy and demonstrated pathological changes in the structure of the absorbing cells of the small intestine. In many cases, elimination of gluten from the diet produces a dramatic improvement in symptoms and restoration of normal function of the small intestine. Some patients experience remission within a few days, while others continue to have symptoms for months.

Treatment consists of placing the patient on a gluten-free diet that excludes all cereal grains except corn and rice. Since many prepared foods contain wheat, barley, rye, or oats to provide bulk, the patient must be cautioned to read all labels on packaged foods, even ice cream, salad dressings, condiments, and foods one would not expect to contain cereal products. (See also gluten.) Administration of corticosteroids may be necessary for some adults who do not respond to a gluten-free diet. There is evidence that celiac disease is associated with lymphoma and carcinoma of the small bowel; this is especially true of patients who have not been treated with a gluten-free diet.

ce·li·ac

(sē'lē-ak),
Relating to the abdominal cavity.
[G. koilia, belly]

celiac

/ce·li·ac/ (se´le-ak) abdominal.

celiac

also

coeliac

(sē′lē-ăk′)
adj.
Of or relating to the abdomen or abdominal cavity.

celiac

[sē′lē·ak]
Etymology: Gk, koilia, belly
pertaining to the abdominal cavity.

ce·li·ac

(sē'lē-ak)
Relating to the abdominal cavity.
Synonym(s): coeliac.
[G. koilia, belly]

celiac

pertaining to the abdomen.

celiac disease
a malabsorption syndrome in humans characterized by marked atrophy and loss of function of the villi of the jejunum (and rarely, the cecum). Called also celiac sprue, gluten-induced enteropathy, nontropical sprue, and adult, childhood or infantile celiac disease. Occasionally suspected as the cause of villous atrophy in dogs.

Patient discussion about celiac

Q. Is celiac genetic? I have one son with celiac disease from my first marriage and me second wife is now pregnant,I was wondering what are the chances for this soon to be born daughter of mine to have celiac as well- if I maybe carry the genetic flaw and is there a way to find out?

A. Celiac disease is a very common illness (about 1 in a 100 people suffer from it in different levels), and it is known to have a strong genetic connection. However, there is not one specific mutation that you can get genetic testing to see if you are carrying it. Your soon to be born daughter will have a higher chance than the regular population to suffer from the disease, but it does not necessarily mean she will.

Q. How do you diagnose celiac? My daughter is 3 years old and is constantly vomiting, has diarrhea and stomach aches. Could this be celiac?

A. This could in fact be celiac. The initial step in screening should include: IgA endomysial antibodies (EMA), IgA tissue transglutaminase (tTG), IgG tissue transglutaminase and Total IgA antibodies. The patients with positive antibody tests, and those with an IgA deficiency, should have a small bowel biopsy to confirm the diagnosis and assess the degree of damage, which is performed endoscopically (looking inside the body by inserting a tube into it).

Q. Is FTT a symptom of celiac? My 1.5 year old son has FTT (failure to thrive) and stomach aches. What could be causing it?

A. Failure to thrive lacks a precise definition, in part because it describes a condition rather than a specific disease. Children who fail to thrive don't receive or are unable to take in, retain, or utilize the calories needed to gain weight and grow as expected. FTT can be caused from many different things: social factors, conditions involving the gastrointestinal system like gastroesophageal reflux, chronic diarrhea, cystic fibrosis, chronic liver disease, and celiac disease. From a chronic illness or medical disorder, an intolerance of milk protein, infections or metabolic disorders.

More discussions about celiac