Celiac Disease Specialists

Illinois Gastroenterology Group -  - Gastroenterology

Illinois Gastroenterology Group

Gastroenterology located in Oak Lawn, Oakbrook Terrace & Palos Heights, IL

Celiac is an autoimmune disease that affects approximately one in 100 people. Left untreated, celiac disease can increase your risk of developing chronic health problems like diabetes and multiple sclerosis (MS). At Illinois Gastroenterology Group in Oak Lawn, Oakbrook Terrace, and Palos Heights, Illinois, the team of board-certified gastroenterologists provides lifestyle modification counseling and other treatments to ease the symptoms of gluten intolerance. Call or use the online booking tool to make your appointment today.

Celiac Disease Q & A

What is Celiac Disease?

Celiac disease is an immune reaction caused by eating gluten, a type of protein found in rye, wheat, and barley. If you have celiac disease, eating gluten triggers a reaction that damages the lining of your small intestine. Over time, this damage prevents your body from absorbing vital nutrients, and this can also cause a variety of uncomfortable symptoms. 

Children with untreated celiac disease are at risk of growth and developmental problems. While adults with the condition are at a higher risk of anemia, bloating, and chronic fatigue.

What are the Symptoms of Celiac Disease?

Symptoms of celiac disease vary greatly from patient to patient and between children and adults. However, telltale signs include: 

  • Weight loss
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Gas
  • Abdominal pain

Celiac disease also presents symptoms outside of your digestive system. In fact, many people with celiac disease suffer from mouth ulcers, frequent headaches, and joint pain. 

When Should I See a Doctor Regarding Celiac Disease?

If you regularly experience digestive discomfort or diarrhea after eating gluten, and your symptoms last for two weeks or longer, it’s important to schedule an appointment with the team at Illinois Gastroenterology Group. 

Before changing your eating habits, such as trying a gluten-free diet, speak with your provider. Stopping gluten conception before being tested for celiac disease may impact your results. 

What Causes Celiac Disease?

Scientists and researchers aren't entirely sure what causes celiac disease but think that a combination of factors plays a role, including:

  • Genetics
  • Gastrointestinal infections
  • Gut bacteria imbalance
  • Pregnancy

High levels of stress and anxiety are also thought to contribute to celiac disease. 

Can I Manage the Symptoms of Celiac Disease?

The caring providers at Illinois Gastroenterology Group help patients manage the symptoms of celiac disease through dietary counseling. Following an exam, review of your medical history, and discussion of your symptoms, your provider can develop a gluten-free nutrition plan that limits the detrimental effects of celiac disease. 

In some cases, eating a gluten-free diet presents nutritional deficiencies. If necessary, your Illinois Gastroenterology Group provider can prescribe dietary supplements, like calcium, iron, or vitamin B12, in pill form. Throughout the course of treatment, your provider closely monitors your progress, making adjustments as necessary. 

If you suspect celiac disease is the source of your discomfort, treatment is available. Call or use the online booking tool to make an appointment at Illinois Gastroenterology Group today.