Stories about: celiac disease

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med book
Medical terminology can be confusing for many patients, especially children.

Have you ever suffered a medical nightmare like this?

“Patient displays an acute communicable disease with an incubation period of 2 or 3 weeks and caused by herpesvirus, usually found in children. Manifestations include coryza, fever, malaise, and headache, followed in 2 or 3 days by the eruption of macular vesicles.”

Chances are you have. The above paragraph is just a complicated description of a common childhood virus: chicken pox. In most cases doctors are happy to act as medical translators for their patients— explaining complicated medical terminology in every day language— but when it comes to written material, many medical publications rely heavily on industry jargon. It can be intimidating and confusing to patients, especially kids.

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Going gluten-free

People with celiac disease need to eat a gluten free diet, but why are other consumers joing them?
People with celiac disease need to eat a gluten-free diet, but why are other consumers joining them?

The Hannaford store in Portland Maine recently expanded its Nature Place department –which used to include but a few shelves of gluten-free products– to a 40-foot area stocked with more than 500 items ranging from cookies to pasta sauce, all of them free of the protein that can pose real problems for people with celiac disease.

Oddly enough, the celiac disease population—the people who genuinely need gluten-free food—seem to have little to do with the current boom in gluten-free products.

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This week on Thrive: March 8 – 12

Here’s a quick look at what Thrive was up to last week:

Sleep deprivation affects how we interpret emotional cues. The FDA is tired of misleading food labels. Second hand smoke has deadly consequences. Children’s launches a new stem cell website. One mother tells her story of finding out her daughter has celiac disease. Do you know what disease sounds like? Children’s Facebook fan page reaches 100,000 fans. Ray Tye, a noted children’s philanthropist, dies. Michael Agus, MD, reports back from Haititwice. Should you take your kids to see Alice in Wonderland?

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One mother's story: celiac disease

The Tafts have turned Erica's gluten-free diet into a family affair.
The Tafts have turned Erica's gluten-free diet into a family affair.

by Tara Taft

Although my husband called her “Smiley,” our happy baby, Erica, was clingy and cranky. For two months, we cleaned up after our 22-month-old as she vomited every day and watched in growing alarm as her tummy grew more and more distended, while her arm and leg muscles atrophied. Her pediatrician thought she had a virus, but she wasn’t getting any better. After four weeks, he referred us to Children’s Hospital Boston, where her gastrointestinal doctor suspected celiac disease.

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