August 2009

The latest CSA Greater Chicago Newsletter is out.

Learn about the new gluten free Betty Crocker mixes, how Starbucks let all the celiacs down, and how to make some great Banana Bars.

To download any of the recent Chicago Celiac newsletters, go to this page on my web site. While you’re at it, if you haven’t done so already, click here to join the Celiac Sprue Association of Greater Chicago. You’ll be glad you did.

Having most of my family celiac, as well as myself, you would think by now I would learn the importance of reading labels. However, this past week while food shopping, I let go of my standard “read everything before it goes into my cart”.

My husband, a fellow celiac, really enjoys the Chex line of gluten-free cereals, especially the Cinnamon Chex. I bought the gluten free version several weeks ago and was thrilled to have found what I thought was the very same cereal in my local supermarket. My husband gobbled up the box in a very short amount of time. Along the way, he began having symptoms of contamination, such as abdominal pain, cramping and worsening Dermatitis Herpetiformis. We racked our brain to figure out the source of contamination.

One morning while he was sitting and enjoying what he believed to be a gluten free bowl of cereal, he was reading the box and looked a bit perplexed. He casually asked me if I was trying to “poison” him. I asked to see the box. Lo and behold, there were the dreaded words “barley malt”. I lost count at how many times I said I was sorry, but moreso I was angry with myself for not being more careful. The boxes look very similar, except that the one that I purchased had the words “gluten free” missing from the front of the package. Had I looked, I would have realized that it was the wrong version of the cereal he so enjoys.

So the moral of this story is not to get complacent or lazy. Continue reading your labels so you don’t “poison” someone you love!

Another sign that celiac disease is making it to the mainstream media.

On August 15, 2009, the New York Times published an article titled “The Expense of Eating With Celiac Disease.”

The article noted that the extra cost of gluten free foods is not reimbursed by insurance plans – in contrast with other countries such as Great Britain and Italy where gluten free foods are prescribed or patients receive government stipends for the food.

The article also notes how you can cut costs while maintaining your diet and how you can write off the costs of gluten free foods on your taxes.

Definitely worth a read!

Researching something online and found a very complete list of all gluten-free medications. The link is as follows:

Note that manufacturers can change the formulations of their medications at any time, but in general this list is a great way to double check the medications you are taking to find out if they may have gluten in them.

The start of school is almost here!

Under Illinois Administrative Code, children are required to have a physical examination performed within one year prior to entering pre-school, kindergarten/first grade, sixth grade, and ninth grade. Lead screening is also required for children under six years old before entering kindergarten or first grade.

Parents need to compete information on the physical examination form prior to the child’s physical exam. You can download the Illinois State form at this link:

Children must also have basic immunizations or proof of immunity to the following diseases before entering school: Diptheria/Pertussis/Tetanus (DPT), polio, Measles/Mumps/Rubella (MMR), Hemophilus influenza B (HiB), Hepatitis B, and varicella (chicken pox).

Illinois Administrative Code also requires that children in kindergarten, second, and sixth grade have a dental examination.
The dental forms that must be completed can be located at this link

Finally, children entering kindergarten must have an eye examination performed by an optometrist or by a physician who performs eye examinations.
Eye examination forms can be downloaded here:

In some instances, parents can obtain waivers for health examination or immunization requirements. You can get more information on school examinations from the Illinois Department of Public Health web site.

I am happy to perform school physicals and provide necessary immunizations. I can also provide additional immunizations against diseases such as meningococcus and cervical cancer.

Please feel free to call my office to make an appointment! With some vaccinations, it may take me a week to obtain them from the manufacturer, so please call ahead!

Friday was the last day in my office at the Silver Cross Professional Building! Thanks to Silver Cross Hospital for such a good experience with my old office.

My new office is in Mokena on Bormet Drive. It is very easy to get there – less than a mile south of the La Grange Road exit from Interstate 80. You can park 50 feet from the front door.

Directions to my office can be found at this link. Alternatively, you can go to this link at, type in your starting address, and MapQuest will give you door-to-door directions to my office.

I look forward to seeing everyone in my new place!