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What Were the Symptoms That Made You Search for an Answer? Did They Improve Once You Went Gluten-Free?

Celiac disease and gluten sensitivity are related to over 300 signs, symptoms, associated disorders and complications.

Symptoms differ for everyone. One person might have gastrointestinal problems. Another might have a mental disorder, without any gut issues. Bones, skin, reproduction, muscles – any body system and organ can be affected.

We were the first publisher to report this in our groundbreaking book, Recognizing Celiac Disease. You can find them all listed on our Symptom Guide and our Gluten Free Works Health Guide, our online resource that tells you how to fix them.

When it comes to seeking a diagnosis, there is usually some tipping point or an epiphany where we realize something is really wrong and we need to figure it out.

What were the symptoms that made you seek a diagnosis?

Please answer in the comments below. Your answers will help others.

Thank you!

John Libonati, Publisher

About John Libonati

John Libonati
Author Information: John Libonati, Philadelphia, PA Publisher, & The Gluten Free Works Health Guide. Editor & Publisher, Recognizing Celiac Disease.
  • Bebe says:

    My finger nails developed ridges and then turned to paper about 2 months after my gall bladder was removed. I had noticed other minor signals, but nothing was really alarming or nearly so overt.

  • Suzy says:

    I only periodically ran low-grade fever. My daughter has more gastrological issues.

  • SK says:

    Itchy itchy rash.

  • Karin says:

    Leading up to seeking information I had numerous little symptoms including the development of a strange puffy appearance (in which had to have a ring cut from my finger). I thought it must be some gain in weight leading into winter, some of it might have been due to my energy levels being low for a while already. At same time noticed ‘brain fog’, and now with benefit of hindsight a lack of self awareness. I did notice the ‘memory’ issues beginning to interfere with daily life. I’m sure it contributed to the development of some social phobia and moderate anxiety. About two nights a week my feet would burn. I didn’t have stomach pain or flatulence but some toilet habits had definitely changed. Was not pleasant. I went to my GP but unfortunately nothing was resolved. After listing my symptoms for online search, the results included images of a rash exactly like one I’d had years earlier (three bouts over time), called ‘Dermatitis Herpetiformis’. I had lived this way already for a few years. My early efforts of gluten free diet were woeful so continued to get symptoms. I’ve had two blood tests for Celiac both came back negative. However, if I do not consume gluten I am fine. If I’d known at the time about the rash, could have had a biopsy for a positive result. My GP had not picked up on it, instead prescribing a steroid cream. Incidententally, I had first noticed symptoms as a teenaged but they were so mild in comparison and I did not know what ‘normal’ wellness felt like, for example I’d always had vertical ridges on my nails etc. The major troubles listed above had began when I stopped smoking later in life (44) – in fact I believe it may have brought it on, which is a fair payment I’m happy that I did. I just wish a test would show my sensitivity, or that I suffer from this disease. People tend to ask if I’ve had a blood test to prove it, then I have to tell them I had but the blood test is not accurate, it doesn’t quite cut it… you know the story.

    • Tammy says:

      Hi Karin! I’m going to take the DNA test on 23 and Me. It will tell you if you carry the gene for celiac disease. For me, that will be proof enough. I certainly know how you feel about having proof, but we already know that we feel better now that we made the connection and have eliminated gluten from our diet. Best of luck.


  • Patricia Meko says:

    Excruciating abdominal pain and bloating that lasted 4 to 5 days. Sometimes a rash and fever.

  • Arlene says:

    I had what I thought was rotator cuff injury, couldn’t raise my right arm or twist it around to back…very painful,,,,went on for over a year,,,,
    Then, my son, age 44, developed the same symptoms in both shoulder areas, couldn’t use his arms, very scary.
    Online, I noticed a picture of bilateral inflammation in the shoulders on a site that listed gluten intolerance as one of the causes. So last fall we both went on strict gluten-free diets, and the pains for both of us was gone in about 6 weeks. We are staying on this diet.

  • Tammy says:

    My symptoms were subtle and gradual. Around the age of 12, I developed Dermatitis Herpetiformis on the backs of my arms, and on my thighs. Around the age of 16, I started having painful trapped gas. Around the age of 50, I started getting diverticulitis, painful joints, abnormal thyroid tests, shooting pains in my fingers and toes, brain fog, stomach ache every morning, GERD, excess phlegm, headaches, very bad smelling stools, Dermatitis Herpetiformis near my hairline and on my spine, as well as on my arms and legs, gluten ataxia. I felt like I was falling apart. I had been to the doctor regarding some of my symptoms, but he didn’t pick up on the signs. After speaking with a co-worker about my symptoms, she told me that her granddaughter had celiac disease and the symptoms sounded like hers. I made the decision to get off of gluten for a month to see if I felt any better. Within two weeks I was feeling back to normal. That was two years ago. It’s been an adjustment, but I feel SO much better now. It makes me ill to think back about when my symptoms started and how many years that I have been damaging my body with gluten. I have four other family members on my mom’s side of the family that have celiac disease or other autoimmune diseases.

  • Gluten Free Chickadee says:

    I had bathroom issues for years, always after I’d eaten…I thought it was normal. But then about 4 years ago my day would start and by the time I ate/drank my breakfast my stomach would be so bloated I could barely stay in my pants comfortably. –Meanwhile, my youngest child was eating the strangest things, chalk, cement…Doc ran blood work, iron deficient anemic. She also mentioned this can go along with Celiac, so let’s scope him. Sure enough!! He had and so do all of my children. I stopped eating gluten and my bathroom problems and bloating have completely disappeared!! I have never been formally tested but when I have talked to the docs, I am the carrier (my husband tested negative) and I feel great, so I’m confiysaying I have Celiac as well.

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