Friday, December 19, 2008

Am I a celiac? Or not?

Well, we just don't know for sure! And apparently we never will! :(

I saw my GI doctor this week, and he told me that my biopsy showed no damaged villi. Which is good, of course. And of course my earlier bloodwork was negative for celiac disease....they didn't find any antibodies.

BUT I do have one of the celiac genes (HLA DQ8), and the doctor explained that because I'm on high doses of prednisone and Imuran, he would expect the bloodwork and biopsy to be negative even if I do have celiac disease!

So after all of that, he can't definitively rule out celiac disease! Especially because of my dietary responses to being on gluten and the being off gluten. He says that I could be gluten intolerant and not celiac, but he suspects that I do have celiac disease, for several reasons, including my predisposition to develop all sorts of autoimmune diseases at the drop of a hat (celiac disease would be my 6th diagnosed autoimmune disease!).

In any case, it is absolutely certain that I must be gluten free, whether I'm gluten intolerant or have full-blown CD, because the treatment for both conditions is the same: STAY AWAY FROM GLUTEN!

I guess I'm disappointed because I wanted a "firm" diagnosis....this feels a bit "soft" around the edges.

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