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Original article| Volume 94, ISSUE 7, P1253-1260, July 2019

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Micronutrient Deficiencies Are Common in Contemporary Celiac Disease Despite Lack of Overt Malabsorption Symptoms



      To evaluate micronutrient deficiencies in a contemporary cohort of adult patients with newly diagnosed celiac disease (CD).

      Patients and Methods

      This is a retrospective study of prospective adults newly diagnosed with CD from January 1, 2000, through October 31, 2014, at Mayo Clinic. Micronutrient data were collected for tissue transglutaminase IgA, zinc, 25-hydroxy vitamin D, ferritin, albumin, copper, vitamin B12, and serum folate. Data were analyzed for absolute number of deficiencies and associations with age, sex, body mass index, presenting symptoms, and tissue transglutaminase IgA; each deficiency was assessed using logistic regression. Deficiencies were compared with age- and sex-matched controls from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.


      In total, 309 patients with CD (196 women and 113 men; mean age, 46.1±15.1 years; mean body mass index, 25.9 kg/m2) were included. Weight loss was seen in only 25.2% (78/309) of patients. Zinc was deficient in 59.4% (126/212) of patients with CD compared with 33.2% (205/618) of controls (P<.001). Albumin was low in 19.7% (24/122) compared with 1.1% of controls (P<.001). Copper was low in 6.4% (13/204) compared with 2.1% (13/618) of controls (P=.003). Vitamin B12 was low in 5.3% (13/244) compared with 1.8% (11/618) of controls (P=.004). Folate was low in 3.6% (6/159) compared with 0.3% (2/618) of controls (P=.002). 25-Hydroxy vitamin D was low in 19.0% (44/213) compared with 18% (111/618) of controls (P=.72). Ferritin was low in 30.8% (66/214) of patients; no NHANES controls were available for comparison for ferritin.


      Micronutrient deficiencies remain common in adults with CD despite increased nonclassic presentation. This study provides support for micronutrient assessment at the time of CD diagnosis.

      Abbreviations and Acronyms:

      BMI (body mass index), CD (celiac disease), NHANES (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey)
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