Hi everyone. I apologise in advance for the following long explanation and I really hope to hear your opinions on this soon. My sister suffered a variety of symptoms from a very young age, spent long periods of her childhood in hospital, went through numerous and different treatments because doctors at the time just did not know much about CD. She was diagnosed with CD when she was 25, after spending nearly two months in hospital during her first pregnancy: she was hospitalised because her condition degenerated when her legs started to swell beyond limit and about three weeks after hospitalisation water got into her lungs and my sister went into a coma for a few hours. Again, doctors felt out of their depths and tried all sorts of "tests", considering different possibilities from diabetes to epilepsy. So it was a great relief for everyone when the correct diagnosis was finally found - by the way, baby boy was born healthy and strong - . Close family members had the appropriate blood test as well and from the results it seemed that no one else in the family had CD. This was about sixteen years ago. I am now 41 years old and my health has somehow gradually started to "weaken" especially in the last 10 years or so, but I've been blaming the change of climate and different lifestyle for this (I came to live in the UK from Italy about 18 years ago). However, it's been mostly in the last four years that I've started to suffer symptoms such as bone pain, anaemia, lethargy, bloating and, in the last year especially chronic stomach-related problems, not to mention depression, anxiety, agoraphobia etc. Anyway, what worried me most were the stomach-related problems, as there is a family history of colon cancer from my mum's side. However, after undergoing a colonscopy, I was reassured that everything was fine...but I still had the same problems! Finally GP also wisely advised me to have the appropriate blood test for CD, which showed a high level of antibodies to gluten components. The test was repeated twice and gave the same result. My son was also tested and his results were fine. My concerns are: I was told by the GP to stop eating gluten and was referred to a specialist. I have been on a gluten-free diet for just less than a week and will see a specialist in about two weeks. I thought that a definite diagnosis for CD is not given until an endoscopy and biopsy are completed as well? In which case, shouldn't I carry on eating gluten? Also: as the blood test I had about 16 years ago did not show any sign of CD, I am now doubting about my son's results, as he does complains about strong abdominal pain and cramping, fatigue, nausea and although his symptoms are not persistent and recurrent, I wonder whether it would be a good idea for him to repeat the test. Any opinions/advise are very welcomed!
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