Essay about Celiac Disease

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Celiac disease (CD) is marked by an inability to absorb gluten. Gluten, also known as glutenin, is a protein found in “wheat, rye, barley, spelt, and triticale” (Turner and Torkos). The problem with the disease is that it is an “autoimmune disorder in which the immune system responds to gluten by damaging the small intestine” (Turner and Torkos). This damage to the small intestine is “characterized by villous atrophy” in people who are “genetically susceptible” (Parnell and Ciclitira). The disorder may latent for years and then suddenly cause horrendous symptoms that may be misdiagnosed as irritable bowel syndrome. There is danger in a misdiagnosis because many high fiber foods used to help control irritable bowel syndrome are gluten …show more content…
At her advanced age, Florence’s doctor decided to inject plastic into the bones to provide stable strength and to ensure that future breaks would not occur. Weeks later, she had a scope done, checking the small intestine for damage to the mucosa and microvilli. The ending result was a diagnosis of celiac and a decision that she must be put on a gluten-free diet for the rest of her natural life (Florence). With celiac disease, many negative outcomes are possible and many more are probable. Further research into celiac disease substantiates the belief that further research, public awareness, and knowledge are imperative in discovering how to deal with the disease and how to spread awareness of this very serious problem. The small intestine is lined with microvilli (sing. microvillus) and mucosa that entrap and absorb the vital nutrients the body needs to sustain healthy function. With celiac patients, consuming gluten-containing foods causes the breakdown of these microvilli and the mucosa, causing malnutrition through the inability to absorb the necessary vitamins and minerals. As celiac is an autoimmune disorder, it stands to reason that the antibodies are attacking the small intestine and are therefore able to be detected in the blood. This reasoning has been discovered to be true and has become “an
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