Celiac Disease Basics
Celiac disease (gluten-sensitive enteropathy) is an autoimmune disorder that causes your immune system to interfere with the proper function of the small intestine. It is an immune reaction to eating gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye and barley. There is no known cause of celiac disease. It is believed to be a genetic disorder, or something you were born with; however, once developed, symptoms can range from infancy to adulthood.
Celiac disease is considered a malabsorption disease because it prevents the body from collecting nutrients as food passes through the small intestine. Although the disease can be tricky to diagnose, treatment is straightforward and relief of symptoms generally begins within days or weeks of adopting a gluten-free diet.
Symptoms of Celiac Disease
Celiac disease affects people differently, and the symptoms are wide and varied. Experiencing these symptoms does not mean you have celiac disease, just as some patients with the disease may not show any symptoms. However, if you have one or more of these symptoms or a relative with celiac disease, you may want to talk to your gastroenterologist about getting tested.
• Gas, recurring abdominal bloating and pain
• Chronic diarrhea or constipation; pale, foul-smelling or fatty stool
• Weight loss/weight gain
• Unexplained anemia (a low count of red blood cells causing fatigue)
• Behavioral changes; irritability is common in children
• Tingling numbness in the legs (from nerve damage)
• Bone or joint pain
• Muscle cramps
• Delayed growth in children or failure to thrive in infants
• Pale sores inside the mouth called aphthous ulcers
• Itchy skin rash called dermatitis herpetiformis
• Osteoporosis, especially at a young age
• Low iron levels
The reaction caused by the immune response in the small intestine can over time damage the lining of the small intestine, preventing proper absorption of certain nutrients.
Celiac Disease Treatment
Following diagnosis by a gastroenterologist, treatment for Celiac Disease includes strict adherence to a gluten-free diet. A stomach doctor can provide additional management and support for those living with Celiac Disease.
If you would like to see our stomach specialists Palm Beach to find out more about celiac disease or gluten intolerance, please visit Digestive Center of the Palm Beaches. It’s a full-service gastroenterology practice specializing in diseases of the digestive tract and liver, including celiac disease. Our GI doctors utilize a wide range of digestive endoscopy techniques.
Formed in 2005, Digestive Center of the Palm Beaches has two convenient office locations in West Palm Beach and Palm Beach Gardens, as well as hospital privileges at Good Samaritan, St. Mary’s and Palm Beach Gardens Medical Center. Our gastroenterology center is fully certified by the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care (AAAHC).
Our digestive specialists Palm Beach are the foremost experts in celiac disease, digestive wellness and gastrointestinal diseases. With over 80 years of combined experience, our GI doctors perform thousands of procedures each year. Our patients are in the hands of the most qualified and highly trained GI doctors.
The GI doctors, nurses and staff appreciate the confidence and trust that you have placed in us. We take pride in providing high-quality healthcare services in a warm and welcoming environment, where guests feel comfortable and secure. Our center for gastroenterology is a doctor’s office, as well as an outpatient endoscopic facility, specializing in celiac disease, colon cancer screening and gastroenterology.
We appreciate your interest in Digestive Center of the Palm Beaches and our celiac disease doctor Palm Beach. If you would like additional information on our gastroenterology center, please browse our website, call or visit one of our office locations or send us a message on our ‘Contact Us’ page.