Coeliac Disease - Epidemiology


The disease is thought to affect between 1 in 1750 (defined as clinical disease including dermatitis herpetiformis with limited digestive tract symptoms) to 1 in 105 (defined by presence of IgA TG in blood donors) people in the United States. The prevalence of clinically diagnosed disease (symptoms prompting diagnostic testing) is 0.05–0.27% in various studies. However, population studies from parts of Europe, India, South America, Australasia and the USA (using serology and biopsy) indicate that the prevalence may be between 0.33 and 1.06% in children (but 5.66% in one study of children of the predisposed Sahrawi people) and 0.18–1.2% in adults. Among those in primary care populations who report gastrointestinal symptoms, the prevalence of coeliac disease is about 3%.

People of African, Japanese and Chinese descent are rarely diagnosed; this reflects a much lower prevalence of the genetic risk factors, such as HLA-B8. Population studies also indicate that a large proportion of coeliacs remain undiagnosed; this is due, in part, to many clinicians being unfamiliar with the condition.

Coeliac disease is more prevalent in women than in men.

A large multicentre study in the U.S. found a prevalence of 0.75% in not-at-risk groups, rising to 1.8% in symptomatic patients, 2.6% in second-degree relatives of a patient with coeliac disease and 4.5% in first-degree relatives. This profile is similar to the prevalence in Europe. Other populations at increased risk for coeliac disease, with prevalence rates ranging from 5% to 10%, include individuals with Down and Turner syndromes, type 1 diabetes, and autoimmune thyroid disease, including both hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid) and hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid).

Historically, coeliac disease was thought to be rare, with a prevalence of about 0.02%. Recent increases in the number of reported cases may be due to changes in diagnostic practice.

Read more about this topic:  Coeliac Disease

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