This special outpatient clinic has been offered since 1991 and receives many referrals, both from physicians in private practice with special questions about celiac disease and from other hospitals. At last count, approximately 1300 patients with celiac disease were treated here, making it by far the largest adult celiac outpatient clinic in Austria. Since the prevalence of celiac disease in Europe is likely to be between 1:100 or even 1:50, the need will increase significantly in the future. In particular, a new form of gluten intolerance has been recognized in recent years, the so-called non-celiac coeliac disease (NCGS), which should be distinguished from celiac disease.
In this special outpatient clinic, both initial clarifications in the differential diagnosis of celiac disease and follow-up examinations are offered. Control examinations are performed non-invasively with endomysial antibodies, tissue transglutaminase antibodies, antigliadin antibodies, sucrose permeability test or invasively with small intestine biopsy (gastroscopic). In addition, secondary deficiencies (vitamins, etc.) and bone density are checked if necessary.
Furthermore, patients are offered family screening, dietary counseling and monitoring on a gluten-free diet at 1-2 year intervals. In recent years, the collaboration with clinical pathology has been very fruitful, and it is now possible to establish clear histological criteria and staging, and often to correctly diagnose misdiagnosed patients. For the early diagnosis of intestinal lymphoma in refractory celiac disease, the FDGT-PET scan (with SUV) has been established and there is cooperation with oncology.