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Ask the Doc: What can positive tTG test mean?

Q. I had a positive transglutaminase and I am having an endoscopy done to confirm that I have celiac sprue. I am just wondering what other autoimmune/inflammatory diseases would cause a positive transglutaminase result?

A. Undiagnosed and untreated celiac disease is often associated with other autoimmune diseases, and thus a positive tTG antibody test may indicate the presence of other autoimmune diseases. That said, no one will diagnose you with an autoimmune disease based solely on the positive tTG; you’ll need to be tested for ANA, RA, and a host of others. The good news is that many of the associated autoimmune diseases with celiac disease can be reversed with a gluten-free diet.

Health and happiness,
Dr. Aron

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