What are the physical findings characteristic of celiac disease (sprue)?

Updated: Nov 29, 2019
  • Author: Stephan U Goebel, MD; Chief Editor: BS Anand, MD  more...
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Physical examination findings may reveal the following:

  • Abdominal examination shows a protuberant and tympanic abdomen due to distention of the intestinal loops with fluids and gas. Ascites occasionally can be detected in patients with severe hypoproteinemia.

  • Evidence of weight loss, including muscle wasting or loose skin folds

  • Orthostatic hypotension

  • Peripheral edema

  • Ecchymoses

  • Hyperkeratosis or dermatitis herpetiformis

  • Cheilosis and glossitis

  • Evidence of peripheral neuropathy

  • Chvostek sign or Trousseau sign

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