Dr. Joseph Murray on Celiac disease

This Mayo Clinic Medical Edge Weekend features Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist,  Dr. Joseph Murray talking about celiac disease.

Medical Edge Weekend 7-23-11

To view a video on Dr. Murray on celiac disease click here.


  1. Ahmed Amin El-Mogy
    Posted July 18, 2011 at 3:29 am | Permalink

    I would like to know if gluten-free diet for life in management of celiac disease would affect metabolism in patient’s body. I also would like to know if this diet is expensive or it is affordable in third world countries. Thank you.

  2. Bruce
    Posted July 21, 2011 at 6:20 am | Permalink


    Is there any connection between Celiac disease and Kidney disease {nephrotic disease}


    • Tracy
      Posted July 25, 2011 at 1:58 pm | Permalink

      Dr. Murray said this rarely happens.

  3. Andrea
    Posted July 22, 2011 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

    I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease almost 3 years ago, after losing 58#. Now I have been diagnosed with a rare disorder called Superior Mesenteric Artery Syndrome, which I understand may be a result of my dramatic and rapid weight loss. Do you know if SMA syndrome is found more commonly in those with celiac disease? Thank you.

    • Tracy
      Posted July 25, 2011 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

      Dr. Murray said this is not more common.

  4. Posted July 22, 2011 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

    Mayo Clinic Celiac Disease

  5. Dee
    Posted July 22, 2011 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

    Before I was diagnosed with celiac disease 6 years ago, I had lost 35 pounds and it seemed as if a different mystery illness cropped up weekly. I would like to know if there are any long-term effects of malnutrition that never fully recover or reverse themselves after a person goes on a gluten-free diet.

    • Tracy
      Posted July 25, 2011 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

      Dr. Murray said, “There are some possible things to watch out for. Depending on your age, you may risk infertility and bone disease. Also there could be some injury to the nervous system or heart.”

  6. Andrea
    Posted July 22, 2011 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

    As a facilitator for a celiac support group, I hear lots of horror stories about people and their long journey before getting a proper diagnosis. Some of these stories involve physicians, who unfortunately think celiac disease is rare, so they don’t test for it, or they advise their patients to try going gluten-free BEFORE getting tested. Physicians need to be instructed to refer their patients to a gastroenterologist and advise their patients NOT to go GF until AFTER all testing is completed. Going GF before testing may affect the results.
    I also hear of people who have the celiac panel and the small bowel biopsy and the results are negative and then in a few months, or a year later, they test positive. Would you please address these concerns?
    Thank you.

    • Tracy
      Posted July 25, 2011 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

      There are many things to address in your question Andrea. During the program, Dr. Murray said you are correct on all your statements. He said more doctors are becoming aware of celiac disease and gluten sensitivities. Also, researchers are trying to find out how a patient can develop celiac disease after decades of not experiencing symptoms. This is the false negative test result you mentioned.
      It is still a mystery.
      Dr. Murray was very happy to hear of your facilitator role.
      Thanks for your comments!

  7. agrimania
    Posted July 23, 2011 at 8:16 am | Permalink

    I have type 2 diabetes and gluten intolerance..AND lactose intolerance.Is there a way to make my diet more….interesting? It’s so hard to manage…

    • Tracy
      Posted July 28, 2011 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

      Dr. Murray says, “The combination of Type II diabetes, gluten intolerance and lactose intolerance is uncommon. Usually celiac disease is associated with Type I diabetes. There is a Type 1 1/2 diabetes that is really Type I that masquerades as a Type II. That aside, there is no doubt that the combination of a diabetic diet, gluten avoidance, and lactose intolerance is particularly challenging in order to be able to obtain a broad-based nutritious diet. The help of an expert dietician would probably be important in this regard. It also would be important to make sure that the patient truly has lactose intolerance and this can be done with a lactose breath test, and lactose intolerance itself can sometimes be managed without avoidance by, for example, using lactaid supplementation, the enzyme that breaks down lactose. Gluten intolerance, if this is part of celiac disease, certainly will require complete gluten avoidance; however, some people who are merely gluten sensitive may be able to tolerate lower amounts of gluten and not have to so strictly avoid every source of gluten as patients with celiac disease have to. There are more resources on the web which address the combination of the diabetic and the gluten-free diet together that might be helpful.”

  8. Lori
    Posted July 23, 2011 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    It sounds like in order to be accurately diagnosed with celiac disease, one must not have begun to eat a gluten free diet. Does this mean a patient should consider putting up with the symptoms and risking additional damage or illness in order to facilitate a good diagnosis?

    • Tracy
      Posted July 28, 2011 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

      Dr. Murray says, “If the patient has already been on a gluten-free diet for some time, meaning several weeks or more before testing for celiac disease is being considered, then a challenge may be necessary in order to make the diagnosis most accurate. Any decision to challenge the patient with gluten needs to take an account of the impact that may have on the person. For example, I will not challenge those patients who have severe neurologic syndrome, such as ataxia, that has responded to a gluten-free diet. In this circumstance, genetic testing might be helpful. In addition, for patients who have been on a gluten-free diet for a long time and who have become asymptomatic, many do not want to go on a gluten free diet and there may not be any necessity if the patient has become completely well. However, much more frequently, I will see patients who have been on a gluten-free diet for 5-6 months and maybe feel a little better–in that circumstance, it can be quite difficult to know what’s going on and I usually will look for other problems before challenging the patient with gluten. Ultimately, it must be an individualized decision.

      For patients who have not yet gone on a gluten-free diet but are contemplating it, it would really be in their best interests to be tested first to find out if they have celiac disease. The blood tests are readily available to primary care doctors to get tested, and at least this should be done first. Far too often, I have to address problems 6 months later where we are not sure what is going on with the patient and the patient isn’t better.”

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