Referral for Dietary Intervention in Celiac Disease is Low Among Gastroenterologists and Primary Care Providers.

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BACKGROUND: Strict adherence to a gluten free diet is the only known effective treatment for celiac disease currently. Multiple organizations recommend follow-up with a dietitian and guideline directed management after diagnosis. Few studies have evaluated follow-up post diagnosis. However, these do not include a systematic process for monitoring dietary referral among celiac disease patients. We sought to evaluate and compare the frequency of early dietary referral and guideline-directed preventive care and management for celiac disease patients managed by gastroenterologists and primary care providers.

METHODS: A retrospective chart review of celiac disease patients receiving care at a single tertiary care facility. Our primary outcome was to compare the frequency of dietary intervention between gastroenterologists and primary care providers in an outpatient setting after initial diagnosis. Multivariate analysis was performed to determine associated factors for referral for dietary intervention and recommended follow up lab work.

RESULTS: 261 patients were included in the study, 81.6% were followed by gastroenterology and only 51% were seen by a dietitian. Patients following up with gastroenterologists had higher odds of referral for dietary intervention on multivariate analysis (OR 3.29, p value < 0.003). Only 16% of all patients completed appropriate guideline directed follow-up care.

CONCLUSIONS: Dietary intervention and follow-up of preventive care lab work was low in celiac disease patients. There is an opportunity for further education of both primary care providers and gastroenterologists on the importance of early dietary referral and appropriate medical management at follow-up.




Medicine and Health Sciences




Department of Medicine

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