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Celiac Disease Test (Gluten Intolerance Test)

This checks for celiac disease antibodies.

Collection method

Typically blood (venipuncture)

Test preparation



Ages 18+ only; Could vary by provider

Turnaround time

Typically 48-72 hours

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Celiac Disease Testing

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder that affects the small intestine. This disorder is usually passed by genetics, but can also present spontaneously. Additionally, there are some medical conditions associated with an increased risk of celiac disease. According to the NIH, these conditions include

  • Type 1 diabetes
  • Autoimmune thyroid disease
  • Down syndrome
  • Turner syndrome

If you have any of these conditions or are experiencing symptoms, your healthcare provider may recommend testing for celiac disease.

What tests are involved to diagnose celiac disease?

Getting a blood test is usually the starting point for diagnosing celiac disease, according to the NIH. If the blood test results suggest celiac disease, a biopsy of the small intestine may be recommended to confirm the diagnosis.

What are the blood tests used to diagnose celiac disease?

Celiac testing measures the levels of certain antibodies in the blood that are typically elevated in people with celiac disease. The specific antibodies celiac testing looks for, according to the NIH, are:

  • Tissue transglutaminase antibodies (tTG-IgA)
  • Deamidated gliadin peptide (DGP) antibodies

What is a small bowel biopsy and how is it performed?

A small bowel biopsy is a procedure that involves taking a small sample of tissue from the lining of the small intestine and examining it under a microscope to check for signs of damage, which can indicate celiac disease.

During the procedure, a thin, flexible tube called an endoscope is passed through the mouth or nose and into the upper part of the small intestine, according to BeyondCeliac.Org. The endoscope has a tiny camera at the end, which allows the doctor to see the lining of the small intestine and take a biopsy. The doctor will use a small instrument passed through the endoscope to take several small tissue samples from the lining of the small intestine. The procedure typically takes around 15-30 minutes and is usually done under sedation or anesthesia to minimize discomfort, according to the Celiac Disease Foundation.

When should I get tested for celiac disease?

According to the Mayo Clinic, you should consider getting tested for celiac disease if you are experiencing symptoms associated with the condition, such as:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Bloating
  • Weight loss
  • Fatigue

Testing is also recommended for people who have first-degree relatives (parents, siblings, or children) with celiac disease because celiac disease is passed through genetics.

How to prepare for a celiac test

For both a blood test and an intestinal biopsy, the Mayo Clinic and Celiac Foundation recommend eating a gluten-inclusive diet for 4-6 weeks. This ensures that the test results are as accurate as possible.

Preparing for a blood test to check for celiac disease

The blood test for checking celiac antibodies usually requires no preparation. The blood test is done with a venipuncture procedure—a healthcare professional will draw a sample of blood from a vein in your arm or hand. This is usually a quick procedure that has minimal pain.

Preparing for an intestinal biopsy

In most cases, you will be asked to fast for a certain period of time before the procedure. This helps to ensure that your stomach and intestines are empty, which can make the procedure easier and safer, according to the Mayo Clinic.

If you will be receiving sedation or anesthesia during the procedure, you will need someone to drive you home afterward. Depending on your individual situation, your healthcare provider may provide additional instructions on how to prepare for the procedure.

Finding celiac disease testing

Celiac testing is usually done under the care of a primary care physician. You can use Solv’s directory to find top-rated physicians near you.

Can I test for celiac disease at home?

While there are some at-home testing kits available on the market, they are not approved by the FDA and their accuracy has not been validated through clinical studies, according to the Celiac Foundation.

Most people find that avoiding foods with gluten will help to resolve their symptoms. This is usually the first indication that you may have celiac disease, although this is not reliable enough for diagnosis by itself. Blood testing and an intestinal biopsy are needed for proper diagnosis.

Cost of celiac disease testing

The cost of celiac testing will vary, depending on the type of test, your location, and your insurance coverage.

The average cost of blood testing for celiac disease ranges between $76 and $314, according to An intestinal biopsy will cost more, as it will include the cost of outpatient services and anesthesia.

More about celiac disease

What is celiac disease?

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder that affects the small intestines, according to the Mayo Clinic. This is a condition that can develop if you are genetically predisposed to it. People with celiac disease often have flare-ups that are triggered by the consumption of gluten (a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye).

There is currently no cure for celiac disease, according to the Mayo Clinic. However, most people can manage symptoms by following a gluten-free diet.

What are the symptoms of celiac disease?

Symptoms of celiac disease can be different for adults and children, according to the Mayo Clinic. For adults, the most common symptoms are:

  • Diarrhea
  • Fatigue
  • Weight loss
  • Bloating and gas
  • Abdominal pain
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Constipation

More severe symptoms for adults include:

  • Anemia
  • Itchy, blistery skin rash (dermatitis herpetiformis)
  • Mouth ulcers
  • Headaches
  • Numbness and tingling in the feet and hands
  • Problems with balance
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Joint pain

Common symptoms of celiac disease in children include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Chronic diarrhea
  • Swollen belly
  • Constipation
  • Gas
  • Pale, foul-smelling stools

More severe symptoms for children include:

  • Failure to thrive for infants
  • Dental decay
  • Weight loss
  • Anemia
  • Irritability
  • Short height
  • Delayed puberty
  • Neurological symptoms may include: attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), learning disabilities, headaches, lack of muscle coordination, and seizures

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Celiac Disease Gluten Test FAQs

Find answers to the most commonly asked questions about lab tests.

No, although celiac disease and IBD share similar symptoms, they are very different. They also require different testing and treatment. Your doctor may recommend testing you for both, if you have never been previously diagnosed with either one, according to the CDC.
Celiac disease blood tests are generally considered to be accurate, but the accuracy of the tests can depend on a variety of factors, including the type of test used, the timing of the test, and your recent consumption of gluten, notes the NIH. According to the NIH, research suggests tTG-IgA testing (the blood test that looks for tissue transglutaminase antibodies) is between 90% and 100% accurate.
If you suspect that you may have celiac disease and are planning to undergo testing, it is important that you continue to consume gluten-containing foods for at least several weeks before the testing. The Celiac Foundation says that eating gluten is essential because the blood tests used to detect celiac disease antibodies and the small bowel biopsy used to confirm the diagnosis rely on the presence of gluten in the diet to accurately identify the condition. It is recommended by the Celiac Foundation that you eat a normal gluten-containing diet for at least 4-6 weeks before undergoing testing. This allows time for the antibodies and intestinal damage associated with celiac disease to develop and be detectable through testing.
Yes, a gluten-free diet can interfere with celiac disease testing. Celiac.Org explains that this is because the tests used to diagnose celiac disease rely on the presence of gluten in the diet to accurately identify the condition.
Celiac disease and gluten intolerance (also known as non-celiac gluten sensitivity) are two different conditions that can have similar symptoms. Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system mistakenly attacks the lining of the small intestine in response to the presence of gluten. This leads to inflammation and damage to the lining of the small intestine. Gluten intolerance, on the other hand, is a condition in which a person experiences digestive symptoms after consuming gluten but does not have the intestinal damage or immune response seen in celiac disease.
At this time, a small bowel biopsy is considered the gold standard for diagnosing celiac disease, according to the Mayo Clinic and the Celiac Foundation. While there are other tests that can suggest the presence of celiac disease, such as blood tests for celiac disease antibodies, these tests alone are not sufficient to confirm a diagnosis.
An estimated 1 in 133 Americans (about 1% of the US population), has celiac disease, according to BeyondCeliac.Org.
Yes, children can be tested for celiac disease. In fact, celiac disease is one of the most common chronic gastrointestinal disorders in children, according to the CDC. The Mayo Clinic notes that early diagnosis and treatment can be important for preventing long-term complications.

This publication is not intended to solicit the purchase of laboratory testing from any individual consumer.

Dr. Rob Rohatsch, MD

Updated on Jan 25, 2023

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Rob Rohatsch, MD

Dr. Rob Rohatsch currently serves as Chief Medical Officer for Solv Health. Dr. Rohatsch brings his extensive background in multi-site ambulatory medicine operations, on-demand healthcare, and consumerism to Solv, where he helps drive strategic initiatives in a cross functional executive role. He brings comprehensive healthcare expertise ranging from medical group operations to revenue cycle management and clinical expertise.

Dr. Rohatsch completed his military service in the US Air Force and earned his MD from Jefferson Medical College of Thomas Jefferson University. Dr. Rohatsch served on the Yale School of Medicine faculty teaching at the medical school and is currently on faculty at the Haslam School of Business at the University of Tennessee teaching in the Executive MBA Program. He also serves on several boards and chairs The TJ Lobraico Foundation.

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