Coeliac Disease

Coeliac disease is a chronic autoimmune disorder affecting the digestive system of genetically predisposed individuals. Triggered by the consumption of gluten—a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye—it leads to inflammation and damage to the intestinal villi (lining cells of the small bowel), which are crucial for nutrient absorption.

  • Symptoms

Symptoms vary but often include gastrointestinal issues like diarrhea, abdominal pain, and bloating, as well as non-digestive symptoms such as anemia, skin rashes, and fatigue.

  • Diagnosis

Diagnosis involves blood tests for specific antibodies, genetic testing, and a confirmatory duodenal biopsy during an endoscopy.

  • Treatment

The primary treatment is a strict, lifelong gluten-free diet. Avoiding gluten helps manage symptoms and promotes intestinal healing.

  • Management and Complications

Strict dietary adherence is essential to prevent symptoms and serious complications such as malnutrition, osteoporosis, increased cancer risk, and neurological issues. Patients should work with healthcare providers to ensure proper dietary management and monitor for complications.

  • Conclusion

While coeliac disease requires careful management, most patients can control symptoms and minimize complications with a gluten-free diet.

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