a hereditary digestive disorder involving intolerance to gluten, usually occurring in young children, characterized by marked abdominal distention, malnutrition, wasting, and the passage of large, fatty, malodorous stools.

celiac disease n.
A malabsorption disease characterized by sensitivity to gluten and atrophy of the mucosa of the upper small intestine, manifested by diarrhea, steatorrhea, and nutritional and vitamin deficiencies. Also called gluten enteropathy, nontropical sprue.
celiac disease
A gastrointestinal disease characterized by an inability to absorb the protein gluten, resulting in diarrhea, the passage of stools having a high fat content, and nutritional and vitamin deficiencies. Individuals with celiac disease must avoid ingesting products made from grains containing gluten, including wheat, rye, barley, and oats.


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