[Celiac disease and its diagnostic evolution. Comparisons and experiences in a hospital pediatric department (1975-1992). I].


The coeliac disease (CD) or gluten-sensitive enteropathy (GSE) is a permanent intolerance to wheat gliadin and to correlated proteins inducing malabsorption and typical damages of the jejunal mucosa (total or subtotal villous atrophy = SVA) in genetically-predisposed individuals ("DQW2"). A large amount of research has been devoted to CD pathogenesis: the most recent studies, thanks to sophisticated and experimental methods, support the pathogenetic immunological theory and the one of direct cytotoxicity. The correct diagnostic procedure for CD, established in 1970 by the European Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition (ESPGAN), suggested three small bowel mucosal biopsies. In the last years, because of the difficulties of such a practice, the necessity of non-invasive diagnostic approaches has developed; such approaches have been verified in absorption tests (one-hour blood xylose, intestinal permeability methods) and in immunogenetic tests (antibodies antigliadin, anti-reticulin, anti-endomysium, anti 90 KD glycoprotein, anti-human jejunum, HLA I/II antigens). The specific MHC antigens establish CD's incidence in several population and in particular situations, as in first-degree relatives and in diseases associated with CD (dermatitis herpetiformis (DH), insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM) and other auto-immune syndromes). The specific serum antibodies singly used as first level screening if estimated in combination with absorption tests, reach the highest levels of specificity and sensibility in CD diagnosis. It's anyway fundamental the comparison with at least a typical CD histological feature, caused by a challenge with a sufficient gluten to be carried in dubious cases and in non high auxological risk age (ESPGAN 1989). Adolescence is a period of frequent non compliance with a gluten-free diet and of particular psychological and physical problems: the apparent "gluten insensitivity", typical of teen-agers and adults, recalls the definitions of silent CD and latent CD (iceberg like). In the first case the jejunal mucosa is abnormal and the symptomatology isn't evident. In latent CD, genetically restricted, the mucosa is normal but there are minimal markers of inappropriate immunity to gliadin (at intestinal humoral immunity level) and a possible worsening of histological lesions to the third stage under environmental stimuli. This represents a two-stage model CD. That's why CD is still under-evaluated despite recent statistics reporting an increasing incidence (late and atypical forms). Prevalence rates between 1:300 and 1:4,000 and more are quoted in literature. The necessity of a strict gluten-free diet is confirmed by the evident frequency of lymphoma and by the increased risk of malignancy in untreated CD.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS)

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@article{Morte1992CeliacDA, title={[Celiac disease and its diagnostic evolution. Comparisons and experiences in a hospital pediatric department (1975-1992). I].}, author={M A Della Morte and Mar{\'i}a Rosa Sala and Paola Morelli and V Meschi and Antero Benedito Da Silva and Federico Valli}, journal={La Pediatria medica e chirurgica : Medical and surgical pediatrics}, year={1992}, volume={14 3}, pages={251-71} }