Type 1 diabetes linked to coeliac disease
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that causes the body's immune system to mistakenly attack the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas, according to the American Diabetes Association.
Parents of young children with type 1 diabetes need to be on the lookout for symptoms of another autoimmune condition – coeliac disease, new research suggests.
The study found these youngsters appear to face a nearly tripled risk of developing coeliac disease autoantibodies, which eventually can lead to the disorder, which is chronic and causes an intolerance to gluten, which damages the small intestinal lining. The severity of symptoms differs from person to person.
"Type 1 diabetes and coeliac disease are closely related genetically," explained study author Dr William Hagopian.
"People with one disease tend to get the other. People who have type 1 diabetes autoantibodies should get screened for coeliac autoantibodies," Hagopian said. He directs the diabetes programme at the Pacific Northwest Research Institute in Seattle.
Insulin is a hormone that helps to usher the sugar from foods into the body's cells to be used as fuel. Because the autoimmune attack leaves people with type 1 diabetes without enough insulin, they must replace the lost insulin through injections or an insulin pump with a temporary tube inserted under the skin.
Coeliac disease is an autoimmune disease that causes the immune system to attack the lining of the small intestine when gluten is consumed, according to the Coeliac Disease Foundation. Gluten is a protein found in wheat. Symptoms of coel Continue reading