Clotting Disorders and Celiac Disease


clotting disorders and celiac diseaseHeading into uncharted territory is a new study by Lerner et al -  “The thrombophilic network of autoantibodies in celiac disease”.  Prior to this research, the clotting factors antiphosphatidylserine/prothrombin and antiprothrombin have never been explored in relation to celiac disease.

This research team points out “the classical intestinal clinical picture of malnutrition, chronic diarrhea and nutritional deficiencies are disappearing and extra-intestinal presentations are emerging.”  The well-known picture of wasting children with potbellies is not the typical picture of celiac disease at present.

We are seeing more “skin, endocrine, skeletal, hepatic, hematological, gynecological, fertility, dental and behavioral abnormalities.”  Clotting disorders and celiac disease are more commonplace than one may think.  In fact, there may be little to no symptoms and diagnosis can occur at an advanced age.

What is a clotting disorder?

A clotting disorder is a term that is used to describe a group of conditions for which there is a tendency for blood clots to develop.  When a blood clot forms it’s called a thrombosis.  If you have inherited the gene for one of these conditions you may experience a single or perhaps multiple episodes of clotting.  Some may never have a clotting episode occur in their lifetime regardless of their genetics.

Hemophilia (a bleeding disorder) is the opposite condition of thrombophilia (a clotting disorder).

People with undiagnosed celiac disease may present with a multitude of clotting disorders.  This means they may be more susceptible to a pulmonary embolism (blood clot in the lungs), clotting during pregnancy resulting in a fetal loss and other devastating health conditions.  Lerner et al points out that the onset of the disease may in fact be caused by the cascading events culminating in a thrombolic event.

“A newly explored area of celiac disease is hypercoagulability and the resulting thromboembolic phenomena. There is an increase risk of stroke in adults and children with celiac disease.  Thrombophilia, pregnancy loss, deep vein thrombosis, small bowel infarction, atrial fibrillation, Budd-Chiari syndrome, portal and splenic vein thrombosis, and cardiovascular disease have been described.” – According to Lerner et al

Thrombophilic autoantibodies are active in celiac disease, increasing the likelihood of hypercoagulability (increased tendency for blood to clot) with this disease.  These autoantibodies may share a common thread with clotting disorders, presenting possibilities for preventative therapies.

What does this mean for you?

A health care provider may be looking for these markers with regards to clotting disorders and celiac disease.  They may potentially use preventative anticoagulant therapy to prevent further medical complications.


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