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Cases of celiac disease up dramatically: report

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Fri Jul 10, 2009 12:09pm EDT By Nancy LapidNEW YORK (Reuters Health) - In the United States, celiac disease is four times more common now than it was in the 1950's, according to a study by researchers at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.The Mayo Clinic study also found that people who didn't know they had celiac disease were nearly four times more likely than people without celiac disease to have died during the 45 years of follow-up."Some studies have suggested that for every person who has been diagnosed with celiac disease, there are likely 30 more who have it but are not diagnosed," senior author Dr. Joseph Murray noted in a statement from the Mayo Clinic."And given the nearly quadrupled mortality risk for silent celiac disease we have shown in our study, getting more patients and health professionals to consider the possibility of celiac disease is important," Murray added.Celiac disease, which is the intolerance of wheat protein (gluten), result…