Friday, July 18, 2014

Diagnosis: Celiac's Disease

I know there are a bazillion blogs about living with Celiac's disease and / or about maintaining a gluten-free diet, but being newly diagnosed myself, I need a place to process this and I hope that I can "pay it forward" with what I learn and try so someone else will have a head start on changing their diet.

My diagnosis was the result of a casual mention of chronic iron deficiency when I went to the pre-colonoscopy appointment my health plan sent me to because I turned 50 this year. I had been tracking the iron deficiency under the care of both my primary doctor and hematologist. The GI's office suggested some specific blood tests, one of which was the ttg-iga. My results were so high that there was no question I needed to have it confirmed by endoscopy. The results came in on Tuesday and my already scheduled GI appointment was on Wednesday, so the GI doc did the endoscopy while I was already there and prepped. No question about it... Celiac's.

What I didn't know was that one way Celiac's manifests itself is through iron deficiency. Makes sense if you think about it. My body wasn't doing what it should to absorb nutrients, and one common thing that is easily screened for is iron levels.

So now what? My mom has been living gluten-free for several years now although her symptoms were drastically different than mine. A coworker has children in her family that have to eat gluten-free. Several online friends also follow GF diets. All of these folks have offered hugs and recommendations for GF products and meal ideas to get me started. One friend even shopped at the grocery store with me (well, virtually, because I would text pictures of ingredients if I wasn't sure something was GF and she would tell me yay or nay. I found an app for that today).

So here we go...

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