How common is it?
1 in 133 Americans according to a recent study by the Center for Celiac Research at the University of Maryland. That amounts to nearly 3-million people in the United States, most of whom are undiagnosed.
How is it diagnosed?
Good blood tests are now available including IgA antihuman tissue transglutaminase (TTG) and IgA endomysial antibody immunofluorescence (EMA). The NIH Consensus Conference on Celiac Disease recommended serologic testing as the first step in diagnosis with biopsy of the small intestine indicated if the blood tests are positive. Testing must be done while the patient is on a gluten-containing diet.
97% of people with celiac disease have the genetic markers HLA DQ2 and/or DQ8 compared to 40% of the general population who have these markers so an individual without these markers is unlikely to have celiac disease.
How is it treated?
Life-long adherance to a gluten-free diet