This site is intended for health professionals only


Widespread misdiagnosis of coeliac disease



By Laura Passi

Over half of patients with coeliac disease have been originally misdiagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome, a new survey has found.

The survey of 1,600 patients with the disease found misdiagnosis was common, with patients often being diagnosed with anxiety, depression, ‘holiday tummy’ or gastroenteritis.

Other diagnoses were gallstones; duodenal ulcer; ME or chronic fatigue syndrome; appendicitis and hypochondria.

The survey was conducted by the charity Coeliac UK before the release of new guidelines from NICE on the disease that are expected to improve diagnosis of the disease.

Susan Sarah Sleet, chief executive of Coeliac UK said: ‘As a charity, we are receiving around 1,000 new member requests a month from people who have just been diagnosed.

‘But with around 500,000 people currently undiagnosed in the UK there is still a long way to go.’

Coeliac disease Related CPD

Key questions on functional bowel disorders (1.5 CPD hours).