Jefferson University Hospitals

Infants and Children with Celiac Disease

Symptoms of celiac disease will not be apparent until approximately one to six months after introducing gluten-containing solid food to your baby. Symptoms can vary and what is seen in one child may not be evident in another. The immunological reaction to the protein in wheat, rye and barley is the same process in children that causes intestinal damage in adults.

Common symptoms in infants include:

  • Irritability
  • Disinterest in meals
  • Vomiting, may be projectile
  • Swollen stomach
  • Diarrhea or loose stool
  • Foul-smelling stool
  • Dehydration
  • Inability to gain weight
  • Failure to thrive

Common symptoms in older children include:

  • Inability to concentrate
  • Learning deficit
  • Mood changes
  • Difficulty with memory function
  • Depression
  • Poor growth
  • Anemia

If you are concerned that your child has symptoms that might be caused by celiac disease, our pediatricians who specialize in gastroenterology may suggest that your child be tested.