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Celiac disease: 5 things parents need to know

Dr. Dascha Weir, associate director, Boston Children’s Celiac Disease Program It may be difficult for parents to hear that their child has a chronic illness. When the diagnosis is celiac disease (CD), an autoimmune disorder caused by an intolerance to gluten, there is good news. CD is treatable by changes in diet. How it works: When food enters the stomach, it’s broken down into tiny digestible particles, which then travel through the small intestine. The small intestine is lined with villi — tiny finger-like projections that absorb nutrients from the food passing through. In celiac disease, gluten, which is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye and oats, damages the intestine and causes the villi to break down, leaving a flattened lining that can no longer absorb nutrients as effectively. Dr. Dascha C. Weir, associate director of the Celiac Disease Program in the Boston Children’s Hospital’s Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, discusses the disease and offers tips to help families recognize and manage the condition. Signs and symptoms of celiac disease The symptoms of celiac disease can be very different from child to child. In some cases, Weir says, a child may have celiac disease and not exhibit any symptoms. “Celiac disease is common, and most people don’t know that they have it,” she says. Signs and symptoms of CD in children include: abdominal pain and/or cramps abdominal...
Source: Thrive, Children's Hospital Boston - Category: Pediatrics Authors: Tags: Diseases & Conditions celiac disease Dr. Dascha Weir gluten intolerance Source Type: news

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