Thursday, August 24, 2017

Sweet Faces of Celiac Disease: Meet Austin

Austin is 6 years old and  
was diagnosed with celiac 
disease when he was 
2 1/2 years old.

What symptoms was your child having before being diagnosed?

Constipation, bloated stomach, losing weight, developmental delays, tired all the time. Austin had a large belly and had been dealing with constipation for about a year. The pediatrician just kept giving us Miralax. We first thought he just had a large toddler belly. Eventually, we started noticing that we was wasting away everywhere else, but continued to have a large stomach. He started losing weight and was very lethargic. He was behind developmentally and was not a very happy child. We started searching online for answers and found a picture of a child that looked just like him- with celiac disease. We asked to be sent to a GI doctor, who tested him and the blood work came back elevated. The scope showed actual damage as did the biopsies.

Any other family members diagnosed with celiac disease?

Few cousins

How has your child’s life changed since being diagnosed?

He started growing dramatically- gaining weight and height within a few months. He caught up on the developmental delays. He is now happy, healthy, and growing well. We are so thankful that we discovered the celiac at such a young age.

What advice would you offer a parent who’s child was just diagnosed with celiac disease?

Don't get discouraged- follow good blogs for recipes for cooking gluten free. Buy insulated tote bags to bring snacks, food, etc when traveling, etc. We are thankful that the answer to his health was just changing his diet. It is not always easy, but it is so worth it to see him healthy.

Austin, you're so handsome! I'm so happy to hear you are doing so well. You look healthy and strong too.

Mom, I'm sure it was very frustrating for you. As moms, we know when there's something wrong with our child. We have to be our child's health advocate and when we feel something just isn't right, we push for tests and to see specialists. Good for you to ask to see a GI specialist!

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