On behalf of my son I would like to publically thank Dr Gavin. In 2012, I took my son, yet again to the doctor to talk about his on-going gastro issues.
I had prepared my words….”Give him a script for flagyl as I am sick and tired of being told that my son doesn’t have giardia because what ever he has just keeps on coming back”.
We walked into Dr Gavin’s room as our GP of 6 years was on holiday. Some things are just meant to be and for KJ finally after 12 – 13 years of gastro-intestinal problems: countless doctor’s appointments, a trip to hospital and an appointment with a paediatric gastroenterologist, Dr Gavin in 15 minutes suspected Coeliac Disease.
In a conversation I had with Dr Gavin two years later, I talked with him about rates of diagnosis for Coeliac Disease and whether he found that there is an increase in the number of patients being diagnosed. I hear so many misinformed people say… but everyone has coeliac disease these days or how come so many people have coeliac disease.
I found Gavin’s response interesting… for him, it has been a matter of catch up… yes, it appears that more people are being diagnosed, but these patients should have been diagnosed years before. Our discussion went along the lines of research and publications which drawn attention to a particular disease and diagnosis and so then there is a ‘window’ when there is increased rates of diagnosis. He talked about Vitamin D deficiency as another example of this ‘catch up’ diagnosis.
Next month will be three years since my son and I walked into Dr Gavin’s consulting room. It was ‘kismet’ on many levels. We were lucky to see a doctor who had read recent literature and tried to make sense of KJ’s unwellness.
And luckily for this mother, I didn’t have to launch into the “I just want a script for flagyl…” tirade.
Unfortunately, there are still too many people who haven’t found their Dr Gavin to help them diagnose their coeliac disease.
As a member of Coeliac Queensland, I applaud their ongoing and continued campaigns* to highlight coeliac disease and its diagnosis.
So I think about ways for those already diagnosed to help make a difference. Maybe it might be worth making contact with your extended family and to just let them know the hereditary link with coeliac disease. Talk with those relatives that you know suffer from osteoporosis about the link between osteoporosis and coeliac disease. I think that sometimes, while we might tell family “my son has coeliac disease” we don’t also add the extra important information about hereditary links.
Being diagnosed is a severe disruption to the life of those with coeliac disease BUT for my son we are sincerely grateful to Dr Gavin who in 15 minutes identified a probable cause of my son’s lifetime unwellness.
*Coeliac Awareness Week is 13 to 20 March 2015 and Coeliac Australia’s campaign focus is