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Pediatría (Asunción)

On-line version ISSN 1683-9803


ORTIZ-C, LM; SAMUDIO-D, GC; ZACUR, M  and  AVALOS, DS. Hepatopathy and Celiac Disease in Children. Pediatr. (Asunción) [online]. 2006, vol.33, n.2, pp.118-123. ISSN 1683-9803.

Introduction: Celiac disease can be accompanied by hepatic changes including elevated enzyme levels, fatty liver disease, hepatitis, etc. Objective: This study was done to find the prevalence of and describe hepatopathy in celiac patients. Materials and Methods: A retrospective prevalence study covering the period January 1997 to December 2004. Results: The study included 67 patients: 38 girls and 29 boys (1:1.3). Age at diagnosis was on average 15.14 months (range: 8 months to 11 years). The symptom complex for celiac disease included diarrhea 86%, abdominal distension 54%, nausea and vomiting 46%, weight loss 43%, pallor 40%, anorexia 38%, changes in character 34%, edema 30%, failure to thrive and grow 22%, and debility and hypotonia in 16% of the cases. No pathognomonic symptoms of hepatic disorders were found. Abdominal ultrasound was done in 12 patients, in 6 (50%) of these hepatomegaly was found. AST was performed in 29 patients, with changes found in 15 (51%). The increases were classified as being one, two, three, four, or five times normal value. Using a three-fold or higher increase to define at risk patients, we found 12 patients in that state. ALT: ALT was performed in 27 patients, with enzyme changes found in 9 (33%). These patients were also classified as one- through five-times normal value according to the laboratory results; only one patient was found with a five-fold or greater value, in the other 8 patients the value was less than twice normal value. The average age of the patients with unexplained elevated liver enzymes (transaminasitis) was 2 years 4 months (28 months), with a range of from one-year to seven-years of age. No correlation was found between possibly hepatic symptoms and the elevated AST in the patients studied. Only one death was recorded (1.5%). Conclusion: Unexplained elevated liver enzymes (transaminitis) were found in 30% of the patients with celiac disease studied, for which reason it should always be investigated.

Keywords : Liver diseases; celiac disease; child.

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