Concomitance of celiac disease (CD) and IgE-mediated wheat allergy is described in some case reports. The objective was to evaluate the frequency of sensitization to wheat, rye, barley, and malt in children and adolescents with CD.
Measurement of serum levels of specific IgE to wheat, rye, barley, and malt (ImmunoCAP; sensitization IgE ≥0.35 kUA/L) in CD patients followed in specialized clinics to verify allergy history, general characteristics, small bowel biopsy characteristics, compliance with gluten-free diet (GFD), and occurrence of symptoms in case of noncompliance.
We evaluated 74 patients; the median of age and age at diagnosis of CD were 8.6 years (5.0-12.8) and 3.6 years (1.6-7.0), respectively. Median time of GFD was 3.5 years (1.4-5.8). History of asthma occurred in 17.3% of subjects, allergic rhinitis in 13.5%, and AD in 5.4%. Frequency of sensitization was 4% for wheat, 10.8% for rye, 5.4% for barley, and 2.7% for malt. There was no association between wheat sensitization and age at diagnosis, time of GFD, small bowel biopsy characteristics, allergy history, and gluten consumption. There was no relationship between sensitization to wheat and occurrence of immediate symptoms when not complying with GFD.
In conclusion, the frequency of sensitization to wheat, rye, barley, and malt in CD patients was 4, 10.8, 5.4, and 2.7%, respectively. Therefore, to ensure that cutaneous and respiratory contact with wheat is safe, we advise patients with CD to investigate their sensitivity to wheat, rye, and barley because not all patients with CD are allergic to these cereals.

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