What does celiac disease look like on endoscopy?

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder that affects the digestive system, caused by a reaction to gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye (that sneaky lil devil!). The body’s immune system essentially attacks itself leading to damage of the small intestine. One way to diagnose celiac disease is through endoscopy which allows doctors to visually inspect the lining of the small intestine for possible damage. To answer our question- what does celiac disease look like on endoscopy? – we have compiled some information from those who have already been put under this process.


If you are looking for an article filled with big medical terms and no humor…then step away slowly now because you are NOT going to find it here mate! Here at “Humorously Healthy,” we like throwing puns around as much as stomach cramps after overdosing on pizza. So without further ado, let’s dive into finding out what your insides do when they’re fighting against themselves.

How Endoscopy Works

Endoscopic examination starts with mild sedation (except if one prefers staying awake while about 4 feet of tubing carrying camera equipment goes down ones throat), followed by insertion of a mini-camera through mouth or anus depending on areas being checked (hi there sour patch kids!). In case you forgot (we won’t judge), opening up humans isn’t exactly cheap and easy so an endoscopic exam might require pre-approval from insurance companies– fun stuff!

Getting Ready For Your Test

When preparing for your test make sure not ingest anything within six hours before procedure time (seriously though do not sneak any trail mix in) Doctors generally ask patients stop taking aspirin several days earlier among other medications so its best double check with them beforehand.

What Happens During The Procedure

  • Inserting Device: The endoscope is inserted through the mouth after mild sedation, covering distance from esophagus all the way down to small intestine.

  • Spiral Scan: Doctors essentially scan and take pictures while snaking their way deeper in your gut for any signs of damage.

What To Expect After

Post test patients might experience sore throat or bloating (which if you’re lucky enough can land you a spot on next weeks Real Housewives of Beverly Hills) For those who receive sedation minor post effect such as drowsiness may occur so doctors usually recommend having someone escort (who said not having a crew wasn’t cool).

So What Does Celiac Disease Look Like On Endoscopy?

When viewing the small intestines via endoscopy with celiac disease present we see distinct changes:

  1. Villous Atrophy: Healthy intestinal villi surface area is shag-carpet-like which absorbs nutrients entering the body however they become flat and less absorbative when damaged by celiac disease.

    • These flattened villi are much like walking on eggshells except instead of breaking them underfoot, enzymes produced naturally by our bodies break them apart during eating potentially leading to nutrient malabsorption.
  2. Increased Inflammation & Lymphocyte Presence: Another common visual cue for diagnosing CD would be noticing more inflammation surrounding previously mentioned flattening of intestinal lining caused by gluten hormone reaction.

  3. Depression within Crypts: Lastly but no less important what doctors look out for are notice depressions forming in crypts just below microvilli layer where immune cells reside called intraepithelial lymphocytes (IEL’s).

If this sounds intimidating its because celiac disease is NO joke, left untreated it could potentially cause other serious issues so detecting early can help lead toward maintenance/treatment plan to prevent/blocking harmful effects.

### Conclusion
Getting an endoscopic exam done might be daunting (seriously who likes anything going in their mouth without a reward at end) but if you’re feeling sick and want to know if your issues are tied to celiac disease (or just want legit excuse not to eat kale gluten-free pizza) an appointment with a doctor or even gastroenterologist could be the first step. Remember, humor can help heal any ailment– almost- and It takes that one person hearing about it from someone they trust (like this article)to seek out some answers for yourself!

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