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Lab tests for celiac disease are essential to appropriate treatment

Category: General Health

Individuals who wonder if they have a chronic adverse reaction to gluten may want to consider undergoing a lab test for celiac disease. However, new research from the Mayo Clinic suggests that not enough people are being properly screened.

In order to measure the prevalence of celiac disease in the U.S. a team of scientists combined blood test records with interviews.

Data analyses suggested that 1.8 million Americans have a gluten intolerance, but 1.4 million are unaware of it. Furthermore, 1.6 million individuals are eating a gluten-free diet despite the fact that they do not have celiac disease.

"There are a lot of people on a gluten-free diet, and it's not clear what the medical need for that is," said researcher Joseph Murray, M.D. "It is important if someone thinks they might have celiac disease that they be tested first before they go on the diet."

People who, with the help of a lab test, find out they actually have celiac disease need to make certain dietary adjustments. This includes avoidance of products that contain wheat, barley and rye, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, a division of the National Institutes of Health. However, rice, soy, corn, legumes and other foods are okay.ADNFCR-2248-ID-800832185-ADNFCR

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