The problem is the blood test to check whether you are allergic or intolerant to gluten, or if you have a disease like mine is currently unavailable here in Malaysia. I guess an action must be taken on this. We cannot ignore this situation as the rest of the world has taken many actions in aid to people like me. For what I know seemed India only has started to test people and they found that 1% of Indian population, mostly panjabi race, have been diagnosed with celiac disease.

Many times the diagnosis of CD is missed. Blood testing by commercial labs is not as accurate as research labs; there are individuals who have been told their antibodies were normal, when upon retest, they were actually quite elevated !!!

Blood tests: Testing for Gluten Sensitivity or Celiac Disease

There are gluten allergy/celiac disease tests that are available but not in Malaysia at the moment (for the time being). All these tests help identify various forms of allergy or sensitivity to gluten or wheat. They will look for:

  • IgG anti-gliadin antibodies
  • IgA anti-endomysial antibodies
  • Tissue transglutaminase antibody (IgA and IgG in questionable cases)
  • Total IgA antibodies
  • HLA DQ2 and DQ8 genotyping for celiac disease (used occasionally to detect genetic susceptibility).
  • Intestinal biopsy (needed if gluten antibodies are positive–based)

When you get these tests, there are a few things to keep in mind. In light of the new research on the dangers of gluten sensitivity without full blown celiac disease, I consider any elevation of antibodies significant and worthy of a trial of gluten elimination. Many doctors consider elevated anti-gliadin antibodies in the absence of a positive intestinal biopsy showing damage to be “false positives.” That means the test looks positive but really isn’t significant.

Small intestinal biopsy

This procedure is considered the most accurate test for celiac disease. During the endoscopy samples of the intestinal lining are taken. Usually several samples are obtained to increase the accuracy of the diagnosis.

A study done at the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University re- evaluated biopsies done at other hospitals, and found that their diagnosis differed in Y. of the cases, leading to a 20% increase in the actual diagnoses of CD. Taking biopsies from different parts of the small intestine than traditionally done, may be more accurate in diagnosing CD in some cases. With certain forms of celiac disease (dermatitis herpetiformis, gluten ataxia and other neurological issues), there is often no damage to the intestine and the standard tTG test may be negative. So, there may be many people with CD, whose diagnosis was missed and who think that perhaps they just have non-celiac gluten sensitivity.

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