Patients with celiac disease who do not adhere to a strict, gluten-free diet have been found to have an increased mortality risk, and report poorer quality of life. They often have significant nutritional deficiencies and are at an increased risk for associated autoimmune disorders, other serious conditions, and cancers. Long-term follow-up care is needed to assure patient compliance and positive health outcomes. Children in particular struggle with strict adherence to the gluten-free diet, so long-term follow-up is especially important for them.
Celiac Disease Foundation’s medical experts have developed a list of best practices to assure optimal care for your child diagnosed with celiac disease. This includes regular physician visits and counseling with a dietitian expert in celiac disease and the gluten-free diet. Unfortunately, most pediatricians and family practice doctors will not be familiar with the newly recommended post-diagnosis treatment protocol for a child diagnosed with celiac disease.
If you have a child who has been diagnosed with celiac disease and you want to do all you can to ensure positive health outcomes, you are encouraged to print the Pediatric Follow-Up Checklist and use it with your pediatrician and your dietitian to assure proper post-diagnosis treatment.