Coeliac disease is an autoimmune condition of the small bowel caused by a reaction to gluten, which is found in wheat, rye and barley. It is a common condition occurring in about 1 in every 100 people in UK, and is more common in Caucasian population.
Our clinics in Horley and Reigate, Surrey, and Kent are perfectly located to see children from all nearby areas including Chichester, Banstead, Dorking, Epsom, Guildford, Redhill, Southampton, Portsmouth, Royal Tunbridge Wells, Maidstone, and Epsom.
Coeliac disease in children comes in different forms; typical, atypical, silent, latent and refractory. The typical version of the condition has classical abdominal symptoms such as bloating, abdominal cramps, diarrhoea and constipation when ingesting gluten. Atypical is when a patient does not have gastrointestinal symptoms, instead they have extra intestinal symptoms such as migraine, ataxia and joint pains. Latent coeliac disease is when a patient tested negative for the condition but later develop the disease. Refractory is when a patient continues to be clinical symptomatic despite being on a gluten free diet. Cross contamination of gluten free food with gluten containing food is often the cause of “refractory” coeliac disease.
Children with the condition may have other extra intestinal features such as dermatitis herpetiformis, dental enamel hypoplasia, iron deficiency anaemia, low vitamin D, short statue, delayed puberty, arthritis, osteopenia or osteoporosis, ataxia, psychiatric disorder.
Coeliac disease in children will see patients having a raised anti-tissue tranglutaminase antibody and positive endomysial antibody. Patients often undergo gastroscopy to obtain a histological diagnosis of coeliac disese which show the presence of villous atrophy.
Coeliac disease is a lifelong condition. Patients need to be on gluten free diet indefinitely. The child and family are encouraged to join the Coeliac UK Society for information and support.
Learn more about the common myths about the condition.
If you are concerned that your child may have this condition, we can carry out a coeliac disease test to determine the reasons behind their symptoms.
Please contact us to book an appointment for your child to undertake an investigation at Paediatric Gut Investigation Clinic.