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Celiac disease as potential obstacle to childbearing

DOI: 10.4236/ojog.2014.42014, PP. 75-80

Keywords: Celiac Disease, Gluten-Free Diet, Anti-Tissue-Transglutaminase Antibody, Infertile Couples

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Abstract:

AIM: The authors have aimed at confirming or excluding gluten sensitivity in infertile couples. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Between 2004 and 2010, at our outpatient clinics of immunology, both partners of 223 couples, who had striven for having a child unsuccessfully, underwent history taking, physical examination, laboratory and immuno-serologic tests including anti-tissue-transglutaminase antibody (antitTG), as well as deep duodenal biopsy in antibody-carrying patients. RESULTS: Antibodies against tissue transglutaminase were positive in 6/223 female patients of whom the diagnosis of celiac disease was histologically confirmed in 3/223 cases (1.34%). Of the male patients 2/223 (0.9%) have proven to be carriers of the antibody; histology was pathognomonic in both of them. Curiously, one of the male patients with celiac disease has been the partner of a woman who also had celiac disease diagnosed by the authors. In the followup period, a female patient and the female member of the couple with celiac disease gave birth to healthy newborns after spontaneous conception, as the result of a strictly kept gluten-free diet, as well as occasional treatments of acetylsalicylate for antiphos-pholipid syndrome or levothyroxine for latent hypothyroidism due to autoimmune thyroiditis. CONCLUSION: The results underline that it is worth performing a screening for celiac disease in both partners of couples assessed due to the lack of success in having a child, as infertility can be ceased by an appropriate diet.

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