LAREDO, TEXAS (KGNS) - It's a condition that's always been difficult to diagnose, but now more and more people are finding themselves with a diagnosis for Celiac Disease.
May is Celiac Disease Awareness Month.
It's an important month for me, because I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease three and a half years ago.
It's a lifelong condition that I've learned to live with and it's important to me to raise awareness about it.
So this month you'll see a series of PSA's featured here on KGNS that highlight why getting tested is important.
Celiac Disease is an autoimmune disease that affects the small intestine.
When a Celiac eats gluten, which is a protein found in wheat, rye, or barley, the small intestine is unable to digest it, so the body launches an attack, causing damage to the small intestine.
Over time, eating gluten can cause long term health issues, like iron deficiency anemia, infertility and miscarriage, gall bladder malfunction, migraines and even cancer of the G-I tract.
We sat down with a local gastroenterologist, who talked about some of the symptoms.
"Abdominal bloating, abdominal pain, weight loss, loss of appetite, I would say those are probably the most common symptoms, and you see that list of symptoms is a very vague list of symptoms, so many things cause diarrhea, abdominal pain and bloating, so it's tricky because you can't just base yourself on the symptoms", said Dr. Elsa Canales.
Later on this month I sit down with a Laredo woman who was diagnosed as a Celiac five years ago and I 'll share my personal story with you about my journey to a diagnosis.
If you want to find out more about Celiac Disease, and if you should get tested, you can click the link below.