Could An IgE Mediated Allergy To Wheat Mask A Gluten Intolerance?

December 30, 2010 · Filed Under Allergies 

An allergist generally tests for IgE mediated allergic reactions and may suggest an elimination diet to identify other foods that your body is reacting to. However, in my experience, allergists don’t test for IgA and/or IgG mediated reactions to foods. This is a problem because gluten intolerance is IgA and IgG mediated. With this in mind, people could get diagnosed with a wheat allergy and this could mask an undiagnosed gluten intolerance.

Let me explain further, some people may go to the allergist, get diagnosed with a wheat allergy (IgE mediated), but not get the full diagnosis of having a gluten intolerance (IgA and IgG mediated). Once they start to eat wheat free they may feel better since a large percentage of gluten would be removed from their diet. However, symptom relief may not last or be complete since they may still be ingesting rye, barley, and contaminated oats. They may continue to suffer, with only a partial diagnosis, and this could lead to further complications and symptoms associated with gluten intolerance.

Hopefully, people who are still suffering in this situation would look for help from a knowledgeable doctor  and get a complete diagnosis. For others, the symptoms may be vague or they may get misdiagnosed with other diagnosis.

With this in mind, I think everyone with a wheat allergy should be screened for a gluten intolerance. Otherwise, the gluten intolerance could be masked and people could be left at risk, only partially diagnosed. What do you think?

I have an IgE mediated antibody reaction to wheat and I have celiac disease. Individuals with a gluten intolerance usually have an IgA or IgG antibody reaction to gluten unless they have an IgE mediated allergy too.


2 Responses to “Could An IgE Mediated Allergy To Wheat Mask A Gluten Intolerance?”

  1. Michelle Worthley on July 25th, 2011 8:00 pm

    My son is 8 years old and has a positive ige test for wheat. He has chronic constipation. Could this be caused by a wheat allergy? I understand that celiacs causes diarrhea.

  2. Shelly on August 9th, 2011 10:31 pm


    Allergies and gluten intolerance can cause constipation as well as diarrhea. Have your family doctor assess his constipation to investigate other possible causes as well:)


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