Celiac Symptoms Common in Fibromyalgia

Cort

Founder of Health Rising and Phoenix Rising
Staff member
This study finding that celiac symptoms are very common in Fibromyalgia suggests that everyone with FM should consider getting their celiac status checked and/or try and gluten free diet.

Rheumatol Int. 2014 Aug 15. [Epub ahead of print]Celiac symptoms in patients with fibromyalgia: a cross-sectional study.
García-Leiva JM1, Carrasco JL, Slim M, Calandre EP.

Abstract

Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain syndrome associated with numerous somatic symptoms including gastrointestinal manifestations of nonspecific nature. Celiac disease and nongluten sensitivity frequently evolve in adults with gastrointestinal and extraintestinal symptoms similar to those found among patients with fibromyalgia. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the presence of celiac-type symptoms among patients withfibromyalgia in comparison with healthy subjects and with those experienced by adult celiac patients and subjects with gluten sensitivity. A list of typical celiac-type symptoms was developed, comparing the frequency of presentation of these symptoms between patients with fibromyalgia(N = 178) and healthy subjects (N = 131), in addition to those of celiac patients and gluten-sensitive patients reported in the literature.

The frequency of presentation of every celiac-type symptom, excepting anemia, was significantly higher among patients with fibromyalgia compared to controls (p < 0.0001).


Regarding the existing data in the literature, the prevalence of fatigue, depression, cognitive symptoms and cutaneous lesions predominated among patients with fibromyalgia, whereas the prevalence of gastrointestinal symptoms was higher among patients with fibromyalgiacompared to gluten-sensitive patients and was similar among patients with fibromyalgia and celiac disease patient. The symptomatological similarity of both pathologies, especially gastrointestinal symptoms, suggests that at least a subgroup of patients with fibromyalgia could experience subclinical celiac disease or nonceliac gluten intolerance.
 

Paw

Well-Known Member
Gluten is a weird one for me. I got an endoscopy about a year ago (after one of two celiac blood tests came back marginally positive), but the gastroenterologist found no evidence of celiac after the endoscopy.

Still, after giving up gluten my longstanding IBS improved. I've experimented with reintroducing gluten three times since, but each time I get a persistent aching gut, plus a general increase in fatigue and neuropathy-related symptoms. Nothing dramatic, but unambiguous. In January I tried to eat gluten for a full month, to see if I could reaclimate to it (since giving up gluten is a pain in the neck). But my IBS never faded, and my dull gut ache never completely went away.

So, I'm resigned to the fact that I do have some sort of gluten intolerance (and I do have a fibro diagnosis).
 

tatt

Well-Known Member
Coeliac blood test will not give reliable results unless you are eating gluten and have been for a while. So if you're going to have a test have it BEFORE you do the guten free diet. Then try the diet anyway.

I've had two coeliac blood tests, the second after I discovered the first wouldn't have been accurate :) Both were negative. However a gluten free diet gave me my life back for several years before excessive exercise caused a major relapse. The main impact was in reducing brain fog.

For the times when a gluten free diet is very difficult (like when travelling) I have tablets that help digest gluten like Peptizyde or Glutenase. These supplements are not suitable for anyone who is coeliac but are useful if you aren't.
 

Paw

Well-Known Member
Good to know about the tablets; I will have to try them.

I agree, it seems to me when I'm eating gluten, all of my fibro-related symptoms seem to amp up a bit -- not just the gut issues. It's hard to be sure because they are not extreme, but I've experimented enough that the pattern seems pretty clear.
 

B80d

Member
Same for me ; I developed gut issues along with CFS. Gastro thought il would be celiac...but biopsies came back négative. His alternative diagnostic was either crohn or unexplained Gut inflammation...ONLY one thune IS sure : disease was stopped with gluten free diet
 

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