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Dietary research offers new explanations and treatments approaches for gastrointestinal disorders

CHICAGO, IL (May 8, 2011) Research being presented at Digestive Disease Week (DDW) offers further evidence that diet affects gastrointestinal illnesses, such as gallstones and celiac disease, and that some patients who think their digestive problems are caused by lactose intolerance are actually reacting to a psychological disorder. DDW is the largest international gathering of physicians and researchers in the field of gastroenterology, hepatology, endoscopy and gastrointestinal surgery.

"New research is providing critically important, evidence-based results on the effect of diet on gastrointestinal disorders, and this is changing the way we detect and treat a number of digestive diseases," said Mark DeLegge, MD, AGAF, professor of medicine at Medical University of South Carolina. "It is important that patients understand what they eat has an effect on the way their digestive system works and that diet plays an important part in maintaining good health."

Carbohydrate Intake: A Risk Factor for Biliary Sludge and Stones During Pregnancy (Abstract #322)

High consumption of carbohydrates, starches and fructose increases the risk of developing gallstones during pregnancy, according to a new study from the University of Washington (UW). Pregnant women are frequently diagnosed with gallstones, and gallstone-related diseases are the most common non-obstetric cause of hospitalization in the first year after a woman gives birth. With other studies in men and non-pregnant women tying high carbohydrate intake to gallbladder problems, the UW researchers focused on dietary risk factors for the development of gallstones during pregnancy and the incidence of consequent illnesses and surgeries.

Dr. Ko will present these data on Sunday, May 8, at 8:45 a.m. CT in S401D, McCormick Place.

Do symptoms of lactose intolerance reveal a somatoform disorder? (Abstract #493)

Patients may mistakenly think their digestive problems are caused by lactose intolerance, when actually their problems may be attributed to a somatoform disorder, a psychological disorder characterized by symptoms that mimic physical disease, but for which there is no identifiable physical cause, according to new. These results suggest that symptoms of lactose intolerance could reveal a somatoform disorder and that counterproductive behaviour such as diets excluding milk products should be discouraged as they can contribute to osteoporosis and other calcium deficiencies.

Dr. Basilisco will present these data on Sunday, May 8 at 2:15 p.m. CT in E351, McCormick Place.

Should screen-detected and asymptomatic celiac patients be treated? A prospective and randomized trial (Abstract #620)

A recent study analyzed the benefits of serological screening and maintaining a gluten-free diet in asymptomatic celiac patients. The study results showed that although patients were apparently asymptomatic, they in fact suffered from subclinical gastrointestinal symptoms and lower health-related quality of life when on a regular gluten-containing diet. In contrast, patients on a gluten-free diet saw significant improvements in these parameters and felt that the treatment was valuable and beneficial.

Dr. Kaukinen will present these data on Monday, May 9 at 8:00 a.m. and Tuesday, May 10 at 2:00 p.m. CT in S406B, McCormick Place.


Contact: Amy Levey
Digestive Disease Week

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