Coeliac vs Celiac vs Sprue?

In short, Coeliac, Celiac and Celiac Sprue are the same thing:

  • Celiac disease is the term used the United States and Canada
  • Coeliac disease is the term used mostly in Europe
  • Celiac Sprue is used in tropical locals

The last one, Celiac Sprue is very confusing because its roots are in “Tropical Sprue” which is a much less serious condition that is NOT an autoimmune disease and CAN be reversed.

I have read the Celiac is a simplified way to write Coeliac, but I am no historian so I won’t stand behind that claim.

Another disease thrown around with celiac is Whipple Disease.   Whipple also causes malnutrition because it blocks absorption but is unrelated to celiac.  Whipple:

  • is not an autoimmune disease
  • does NOT improve when gluten is removed from a diet
  • can be treated with antibiotics

regular vs celiac intestine villiCeliac, Coeliac and Celiac Sprue are all chronic gluten induced digestive tract disease that results in your bodies “T cells” attacking your intestines velli.  Velli are the tiny hair like strands in your intestines that absorb nutrients.  See the images to the right.

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