Oral manifestations of celiac disease in French children

Arch Pediatr. 2021 Feb;28(2):105-110. doi: 10.1016/j.arcped.2020.11.002. Epub 2020 Dec 17.


Celiac disease (CD) is an immune-mediated systemic disorder caused by ingestion of the gluten found in wheat, rye, and barley. The currently estimated prevalence in children is about 1%. CD is a chronic enteropathy with gastrointestinal manifestations including diarrhea, abdominal distension and weight loss, but extra-intestinal features are increasingly being reported. Dental and oral manifestations such as dental enamel defects (ED), delay in dental eruption, and recurrent aphthous stomatitis (RAS) are well-recognized manifestations of CD. The aim of this study was to compare the frequency of oral manifestations (ED, RAS and delay in dental eruption) on deciduous and permanent teeth between children with CD and a control population. An oral examination was performed on 28 CD children and 59 control children. All children were younger than 12 years old and had deciduous or mixed dentition. CD children had significantly more ED and RAS than the control group (67.9% vs. 33.9% P=0.004 and 50.0% vs. 21.8% P=0.011, respectively). No delay in dental eruption was observed in CD children. ED were mainly grade I and II of Aine's classification (color defects and slight structural defects). ED were more often seen on CD children's deciduous teeth than on permanent teeth (57.1% and 13.6%, respectively; P<0.001). The main teeth affected by ED are the second molar and canines of the deciduous teeth, and the first molar, central incisor, and lateral incisors of the permanent teeth. RAS and ED that were symmetrical in all quadrants and occurred firstly in teeth that mineralize during the first year of life both seem to be signs of CD. Thus, more information for dentists and pediatricians on these oral manifestations should help improve detection of CD.

Keywords: Celiac disease; Deciduous teeth; Delay in dental eruption-prevalence; Dental enamel defect; Recurrent aphthous stomatitis.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Case-Control Studies
  • Celiac Disease / complications*
  • Celiac Disease / diagnosis
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • France
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Prevalence
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Stomatitis, Aphthous / diagnosis
  • Stomatitis, Aphthous / epidemiology
  • Stomatitis, Aphthous / etiology*
  • Tooth Diseases / diagnosis
  • Tooth Diseases / epidemiology
  • Tooth Diseases / etiology*

Supplementary concepts

  • Sutton disease 2