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International Coeliac Day Ispis E-mail
On 16 May 2016, the Association Of European Coeliac Societies (AOECS) and its Member Croatian society for coeliac disease celebrate

International Coeliac Day

16 th May 2016.

with the aim to raise awareness on missing diagnoses and Croatian society for coeliac disease is organising

Coeliac disease awareness week

from 9 th – 15 th May 2016 this year under the name

“Myths about coeliac disease”

with the aim of raising awareness and knowledge about this chameleon disease about which there are no significant statistical data or scientific research in Croatia.
In Croatia at least 40.000 persons are without diagnosis of coeliac disease, and in Europe 6 millions

Many people today suffer from different diseases, often malignant tumours, and too often the trigger is hidden in a form of coeliac disease. Uncovering of multiple, very vivid myths has its purpose in earlier diagnostics of this disease and prevention of numerous consequences of the disease and its therapy.

We would specially like to welcome to the Awareness week all of you that could give a good professional contribution to this manifestation.
During this event there will be organised lectures of experts and experienced members of Croatian Society for Coeliac Disease, more favourable prices of diagnostic tests on coeliac disease and other services, gluten free cooking workshops, media appearances, display and
presentation of products and etc.

You can find more about the events a few days before the Awareness week on
Coeliac disease is a lifelong autoimmune disease caused by an intolerance to gluten. Gluten is contained in wheat (including spelt and khorasan wheat), rye, barley, oats or their hybridized strains, and products thereof.

1 person out of 100 suffers from coeliac disease It therefore follows that in Europe the number of people affected by coeliac disease should be around 7 million, but only 12%-15% of people affected by coeliac disease actually receive a diagnosis.

In Croatia there are not official numbers, but the assesment and data of Ružica Lah, the president of Croatian coeliac disease association claim that only 3.000 – 5.000 persons receive diagnosis of coeliac disease, wich is only 8-10 % of persons suffering from this disease, and the problem is that most of them don't have complete support in treatment with strict medical diet- therapy.

Moreover, in Europe the average interval between the appearance of first symptoms and diagnosis is over 10 years.

If coeliac disease remains undiagnosed and the afflicted person continues to consume gluten, it can lead to a multitude of severe complications, such as anaemia and in a worst case scenario even to small bowel cancer.

All over Europe people with coeliac disease need accurate and fast diagnoses
The World Health Organization (WHO) states that every person has ‘the right to the highest attainable standard of health’. For those with coeliac disease this means getting diagnosed as a first, very important step.

On 16 May 2016, the Association Of European Coeliac Societies (AOECS) and its Member societies celebrate International Coeliac Day with the aim to raise awareness on missing diagnoses.

Tunde Koltai, Chair of the AOECS Board says:
“A proper and quick diagnosis is a human right for people affected by chronic diseases, as coeliac disease is. We call on individuals, organizations and institutions to ensure that people all over Europe have fast access to reliable tests for coeliac disease as soon as they start to experience first symptoms. Coeliac disease can lead to osteoporosis, depression, infertility, repeated miscarriages and even some kind of cancers. This is why it is important to start a gluten-free diet as soon as possible, which is currently the only treatment for coeliac disease.”

If you think you have coeliac disease, you may wish to start reducing or eliminating gluten from your diet because it makes you feel ill. However, the diagnostic tests for coeliac disease look at how the body responds to gluten so it is essential to continue eating gluten until your doctor has been able to test you. This will help to achieve accurate results both for the blood test and the gut biopsy.

If you would like more information on how to obtain a diagnosis for coeliac disease or how to manage a gluten-free diet, please contact Croatian society for coeliac disease or visit

For more information about AOECS, please visit
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