Celiac Disease: On the RiseSubmitted by Musicians and H... on Tue, 06/26/2012 - 15:37
Sarah Berg suffered from severe gastrointestinal symptoms for six years. “I had gone to the doctor over and over again. I just didn’t feel good most of the time.” She had never heard of celiac disease until a colleague urged her to be tested at Mayo Clinic. Her diagnosis “was such a relief,” she says.
The latest research at Mayo shows that Berg is far from alone. The prevalence of celiac disease appears to be rising dramatically. Joseph Murray, M.D., a Mayo gastroenterologist, says celiac disease is becoming a public health issue. Studies show four times the incidence compared to 1950, with fatal complications if it goes untreated.
“Celiac disease was rare, but it’s now more common in all age groups,” Dr. Murray says. Although the cause is unknown, celiac disease affects about one in 100 people. What’s more, Mayo has found a fourfold higher death risk for people with undiagnosed gluten intolerance.