If you have t1, how much do you know about this closely-linked-to-type-1-diabetes genetic disease?
DID YOU KNOW...
-10% of type 1 diabetics have undiagnosed celiac disease (statistic is from the American Diabetes Association)
-The American Diabetes Association recommends that patients with type 1 diabetes be screened for celiac disease at the onset of the diabetes diagnosis. Did you also know that many endocrinologists screen their type 1 patients more often- once a year for several years and then every two to three years- since celiac can develop later in life?
-A recent study revealed that the older the patients were when diagnosed with celiac disease, the greater their chances of developing other auto-immune disorders.
-Did you assume that you would have obvious symptoms if you had celiac disease?
Celiac disease, for many, has no symptoms for years, even decades. But that doesn't mean that it's not causing all kinds of internal damage even though you don't feel it. This silent disease can wreak all kinds of damage to your immune system, causing additional auto-immune diseases including thyroid disease, type 1 diabetes, Addison's disease, vitiligo and alopecia, among others.
Type 1 diabetes is usually diagnosed before celiac disease. When people have type 1 diabetes and undiagnosed celiac disease, they may have fluctuations in blood sugar levels due to malabsorption issues. Blood sugars may be more difficult to control and may cause more hypoglycemic episodes.
May is Celiac Disease Awareness Month, and this is especially important to me as a t1/celiac, knowing how many other of my t1 comrades may have this disease and not know it.
I hope each of you will take a moment during your next endo visit and discuss your risk for celiac disease. It's just one extra blood test that can be added to the #($!! of blood work tests we already have done for our diabetes check ups. Just remember; not every one with celiac disease has noticeable symptoms. Some may have it years before having symptoms. I was one of them.