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Detection of celiac disease in a medicine student population

MOJ Public Health
Edelweiss casella,1 Alicia Ruth Fernández,2 Julio Horacecarri1


Introduction: Celiac disease affects 1-2% of the world population. The proportion of known versus undiagnosed cases is 1/3-10.
Goal: Characterize epidemiologically and clinically for celiac disease an university population of Medicine students.
Material and method: Data from the clinical history were collected in 638 students between 19 and 38 years. All of them were asked for general and specific laboratory analysis. Those with a high suspicion level of being celiac were asked for endoscopy and duodenum biopsy.
Results: Six with ninety-nine percent (6.99%) of the students with laboratory results were celiac confirmed by duodenal biopsy. Sixty-eight eighty-four percent (68.84%) of the students were women, while among celiacs it was 92.31%. Sixty-nine twenty-three percent (69.23%) of diagnosed as celiacs were within 50 and 80% of possibilities of being celiac. The body mass index of celiacs was low weight, or at the lower limit of normal weight. Thirty eight forty six percent (38.46%) of the celiacs with a positive biopsy had negative laboratory. Thirty seventy seven percent (30.77%) had low total IgA  levels. Fifty percent (50%) of the celiac and 7.37% in the general group had celiac relatives.
Conclusion: In 186 students with analysis, 6.99% celiac patients were found; therefore the biopsy is mandatory in adult population. Four of ten students with positive biopsy had negative antibodies. Celiac disease is a highly prevalent disease, with a heterogeneous clinical presentation which is usually underestimated and underdiagnosed. Early diagnosis is a priority in order to prevent complications and associated diseases.


celiac, antibodies, public health, nutrients