Discussions By Condition: Allergies

Is this Dermatitis Herpetiformis/Coeliac or not??

Posted In: Allergies 2 Replies
  • Posted By: Anonymous
  • March 11, 2007
  • 11:55 AM

I went on a gluten free diet on the advice of a private GP, for abdominal problems and a very itchy rash all over both my shins. I tried not to scratch the rash but when I did, small round holes appeared, about 2-3mm in diameter, which bled. The rash cleared up after about a year and a half staying gluten free, and the abdominal symptoms more quickly. After 4 years I decided to have it properly checked to see if the gluten free diet was unnecessary. I went back to eating gluten for almost three months. I had diarrhoea and a slight recurrence of the rash but the gut tests and skin biopsy came back negative. Does this mean that gluten is not the problem? I am back on a gluten free diet and it's all cleared up again. I am confused. My doctor supports me staying gluten free but I don't want to do it unnecessarily. The rash only appears on my shins, not on my knees or buttocks. What else could be causing these symptoms? And how do I get a clear diagnosis?

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2 Replies:

  • Hi there,It is quite likely that you just have a gluten intolerance. In my opinion feeling better & no rash are good incentives for staying gluten free even if you are not a coeliac. There is a large percentage of the population who are gluten intolerant, and would not show up as positive on endoscopy etc for coeliac disease. I have chosen a gluten free lifestyle, without coeliac diagnosis, as I found when I elminated gluten from my diet the problem I was having with fluid retention disappeared and my iron and vitamin B levels returned to normal after 6 months.In the end do you really need a clear diagnosis, if when you are not eating gluten all your symptoms disappear?
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I am curious, what were they looking for in the skin biopsy? The reason I ask is I have an undiagnosed rash and no one has ever done a skin biopsy -- what kind of doctor would do the skin biopsy for me?Thanks!!!
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
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