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Coeliac Disease - A Conference for Nurses

  • : Canberra ACT 2600


Includes: Signs & Symptoms; Gluten-Free Diet; Gluten Toxicity; Medical Management; Low FODMAPs diet...


Coeliac disease is often talked about but poorly understood. Although it has been present for hundreds of years, research has only begun to expose the complexities of this disease. Coeliac disease is now a growing area of interest, but has increased awareness equated to better care? Do people experience an unfair stigma due to ignorance of this often misunderstood condition? This timely conference offers you an opportunity to gain formal CPD education about coeliac disease. Includes:

  • Why is gluten such a cause for concern?
  • Can gluten be removed from the diet before a formal diagnosis of coeliac disease is made?
  • What are the clinical signs of this multi-system disease?
  • What are potential complications?
  • Why is a strict gluten-free diet the key to successful treatment?
  • What impact can it have on mental health?
  • How can nurses promote health and improve patient outcomes?
  • Practical tips for living with a gluten-free diet, including how to read food labels

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 Print Schedule

Day One



Kim Cass

My Experience of Coeliac Disease

Coeliac disease is often thought of as an invisible disease, yet it is considered to be one of the most common lifelong diseases worldwide. This enlightening session will revealing what it is like to experience coeliac disease. The perspective of a person living with coeliac disease who is also a nurse will set the scene for this two-day conference. Includes:

  • What is the consequence of coeliac disease being an ‘invisible’ disease?
  • What is it like to receive healthcare as a patient with coeliac disease?
  • How is coeliac disease viewed in the community and why is this the case?


Dr Jason Tye-Din

Facts about Coeliac Disease

Has coeliac disease always existed? Is its prevalence increasing or have modern screening and diagnostic approaches improved our identification of this condition? This session will answer some of these questions and provide:

  • Definition of coeliac disease - what is it and what is it not?
  • History of coeliac disease - how did we get here?
  • Incidence and prevalence - how common is coeliac disease and has this changed over time?
  • Who gets coeliac disease?
  • The 'coeliac iceberg' - understanding the significance of this concept


Dr Jason Tye-Din

How and Why Does Coeliac Disease Develop?

Greater research of coeliac disease has moved us closer to understanding the pathogenesis of this multi-factorial disease. This session looks at the many complex factors that cause gluten to activate an immune response and cause damage to a susceptible person. Includes:

  • Why is gluten toxic to people with coeliac disease?
  • How does ingesting gluten damage the intestinal lining and affect food absorption?
  • What are the genetic and environmental factors important in the development of coeliac disease?
  • What is the emerging role for the gut microbiome?
  • Does breastfeeding help reduce the risk for development of coeliac disease?
  • Is there anything parents can do to reduce the risk of coeliac disease in their children?



Dr Jason Tye-Din

Clinical Manifestations - Signs and Symptoms of Coeliac Disease

Coeliac disease presents in variable ways. Symptoms may not be present at all or may be minor or severe. This means symptoms are at times overlooked due to their non-specific nature. People may not recognise the severity of the disease until they begin to feel the positive effects of treatment. This session explains how coeliac disease presents and includes:

  • What are signs of possible coeliac disease?
  • How can coeliac disease affect other parts of the body and how is this clinically assessed?
  • Why are symptoms often varied?
  • What are typical and atypical presentations and how do they manifest in paediatric, adolescent and adult populations?
  • Autoimmune associations in coeliac disease
  • Malabsorption and nutritional deficiencies e.g. bone and calcium metabolism disorders
  • Non-malignant complications e.g. neurological and reproductive disorders
  • Malignant complications e.g. lymphoma
  • Type I and Type II refractory coeliac disease


Dr Jason Tye-Din

How is Coeliac Disease Diagnosed?

Appropriate diagnosis of coeliac disease is not only the key to receiving restorative treatment but also reducing stigma around this frequently misunderstood condition. This session provides a valuable opportunity to increase your knowledge of how coeliac disease is diagnosed, thereby assisting susceptible patients to seek appropriate medical attention and receive treatment. Includes:

  • How is coeliac disease diagnosed?
    • Serology
    • Small bowel biopsy
    • HLA genotyping
  • What is involved in screening for coeliac disease and in whom should this occur?
  • What are the pitfalls of current diagnostic approaches?
  • How might research improve diagnosis in the future?


Dr Jason Tye-Din

Coeliac Disease or Gluten Sensitivity?

Approximately 10% of Australians are now following gluten-free or wheat-free diets. In the majority of cases they do not have a formal medical diagnosis of coeliac disease. Why are people doing this? What is wheat and gluten sensitivity and how does it differ from coeliac disease? This session provides the latest information on gluten sensitivity and the medical importance of distinguishing coeliac disease from gluten sensitivity. Includes:

  • What is gluten sensitivity?
  • What kinds of symptoms are reported in gluten sensitivity?
  • Why is it important to distinguish coeliac disease from gluten sensitivity?
  • What does the latest research in this field show?
  • What role do FODMAPs or other food components play in apparent gluten or wheat sensitivity?



Dr James Daveson

Medical Management Principles for a Life with Coeliac Disease

Whilst a gluten-free diet is the mainstay of treatment for coeliac disease it is important for health professionals to realise that it is a chronic illness that requires ongoing medical follow-up to optimise long-term health. This session will highlight some of the key principles in ongoing care of patients. Includes:

  • What are the key medical principles in following up patients with coeliac disease?
  • How should compliance with a gluten-free diet be assessed?
  • How often should patients have a small bowel biopsy?
  • What happens when people have persistent symptoms despite a gluten-free diet?
  • What is the role for
    • Nutrient supplementation?
    • Pneumococcal vaccination?
    • Specialist versus the GP?
  • Chronic disease management templates



Dr Treasure McGuire

Medicines and Coeliac Disease

The use of medicines in coeliac disease is not considered a first line therapy for the majority of patients. However, it is important to consider the use of certain medicines, such as vitamin supplements, as a preventative strategy to avoid certain complications associated with nutritional deficiencies caused by malabsorption. This session reviews the role of medicines in coeliac disease and includes:

  • Does an alteration to the small intestine mucosa affect the absorption of medicines?
  • Do some medicine preparations contain gluten? What does the 'gluten free' symbol really mean?
  • The use of complementary medicines - friends or foes?
  • What classes of medicines may be indicated as part of treatment in coeliac disease, particularly in refractory coeliac disease?


Day Two



Kristina Petschel

Treating Coeliac Disease with a Gluten-Free Diet

Removing the environmental trigger, or toxin, - gluten - from the diet following a diagnosis of coeliac disease is critical. Understanding the indications for this major dietary change is therefore essential. This session explains the importance of a gluten-free diet and includes:

  • How does a strict gluten-free diet benefit a person with diagnosed coeliac disease?
  • Should gluten be removed from the diet before a formal diagnosis of coeliac disease is made?
  • What are the negative effects of not adhering to a strict gluten-free diet?
  • How are the clinical merits of a strict gluten-free diet assessed?


Kristina Petschel

Making a Gluten-Free Diet Work

Removing gluten from the diet is a lifelong challenge for those living with coeliac disease. While the benefits of a gluten-free diet have been widely established, practically it can be hard to make this change. This session will provide invaluable information for patient advocacy. It will also empower you with the right knowledge to encourage patients with coeliac disease to maintain a strict gluten-free diet. Includes:

  • How can you achieve adequate nutrition for a patient?
  • Which foods can be eaten and should be encouraged?
  • What foods must be avoided - including hidden gluten and contamination?
  • Is alcohol safe to consume?
  • Strategies for avoiding the financial burden of a gluten-free diet
  • Practical tips for easy and palpable meal preparation



Kristina Petschel

Food Labelling in Australia - Standards and Advice

In Australia, food products known to cause hypersensitivity reactions, such as those containing gluten, are required to be declared on packaging. Reading and interpreting this information is integral in maintaining health in coeliac disease by adhering to a strict gluten-free diet. This session aims to provide an overview of food labelling in Australia and help you better understand how to read a food label, with particular focus on recognising products with gluten. Includes:

  • An overview of Australian and New Zealand Food Standards
  • What is required to be declared on a food label and what is exempt?
  • How do you actually read and interpret this information?
  • Practical tips and tricks - are there any apps to assist with reading a food label?


Nicholas Kerswell

Psychosocial Care of the Person with Coeliac Disease

The psychosocial burden associated with the diagnosis of a lifelong disorder cannot be underestimated. Nurses are in a primary position to recognise and promote wellness in individuals who may be prone to or who are experiencing adverse psychological effects resulting from this condition. This important session considers some of the negative mental health impacts associated with coeliac disease and its treatment. There will be a special focus on how to promote optimum quality of life. Includes:

  • How do people perceive coeliac disease?
  • What is the link between depression, anxiety and adherence to a gluten-free diet?
  • How can nurses help facilitate emotional adjustment to coeliac disease?
  • Overcoming fear of ingesting gluten
  • Building healthy body image
  • Minimising feelings of burden of care on others



Glen Harriss

The Role of Coeliac Queensland

Coeliac societies across the globe are essential providers of support to individuals and families, supplying correct information and helping to raise awareness of coeliac disease in the community. This session will provide an interesting look at the vital role that Coeliac Queensland plays, in conjunction with Coeliac Australia, as well as an overview of useful resources for health professionals.


Glen Harriss

Question and Answer Session

This session will provide a valuable opportunity for the audience to ask questions and engage in discussion with a representative from Coeliac Australia.




The Low FODMAP Diet and its Relationship to a GF Diet

The low FODMAP diet has revolutionised treatment of irritable bowel syndrome. FODMAP is an acronym describing poorly absorbed fermentable carbohydrates found in certain foods (Fermentable Oligo-, Di-, Mono-saccharides and Polyols). Dr Sue Shepherd developed the low FODMAP diet and it is now effectively used for the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome. Emerging evidence now suggests many people who are wheat- or gluten-sensitive but who do not have coeliac disease may in fact have FODMAP intolerance. As such, their diagnosis has been instrumental in helping people understand the difference between coeliac disease and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). This session explains:

  • What is a low FODMAP diet?
  • What is FODMAP intolerance?
  • When is a low FODMAP diet recommended?
  • What is the difference between a low FODMAP diet and a gluten free diet?
  • What is it important to understand the difference between coeliac disease and irritable bowel syndrome?


Kim Cass

The Nursing Perspective on Care

The holistic health position of nurses along numerous points of care, across a wide variety of community and acute settings presents an immense challenge when considering coeliac disease. This session looks at the multidisciplinary approach to this condition, with great emphasis on the nursing role. It will assist you to recognise your own potential for improving the delivery of healthcare to people with coeliac disease and ensure the knowledge you have gained over these two-days improves patient outcomes. Includes:

  • Primary care screening and health checks
  • Chronic disease management plans
  • Health promotion and patient advocacy
  • Disease education
  • Prevention of complications


The Goal Need for Program

Coeliac disease is now estimated to affect approximately one in 70 Australians. However, there is a general gap in knowledge regarding this condition. Greater health literacy and known evidence provides an opportunity for health promotion. This leads to informed patients, prevention of complications and improved health outcomes. The benefits of greater clinical knowledge are also important for community awareness and understanding. As nurses and other health professionals who work in community and acute settings are most likely to encounter people with coeliac disease, it is essential they are up-to-date on the identification and management of this condition.

Purpose of Program

The purpose of this two-day conference is to provide professionals who work in a range of health settings with an opportunity to gain formal CPD education on coeliac disease, so as to provide evidence-based care and improve health outcomes for people living with this condition.

Your learning outcomes:

Recognise common risk factors to ensure appropriate screening and diagnosis in people who may be predisposed to coeliac disease

Gain knowledge of the anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology relating to coeliac disease so as to improve assessment of coeliac disease and its multi-system effects

Use evidence-based knowledge of a gluten-free diet for patient education, encouraging adherence to this treatment for coeliac disease

Apply correct information about coeliac disease to reduce stigma in the community and improve psychosocial patient outcomes


To Be Determined

To Be Determined


Kim  Cass

Kim Cass

Kim Cass is an Enrolled Nurse currently working in Primary Practice as a Community Nurse in Brisbane. Kim is a ... Read More

Jason Tye-Din

Jason Tye-Din

Dr Jason Tye-Din, MBBS, FRACP, PhD, is a gastroenterologist who heads the Coeliac Research Group at the Walter and Eliza ...Read More

Treasure McGuire

Treasure McGuire

Dr Treasure McGuire is a medicines information pharmacist, pharmacologist, educator and researcher. As Assistant Director of Pharmacy, Mater Health Services, ... Read More

Kristina Petschel

Kristina Petschel

Kristina Petschel is an Accredited Practising Dietitian who has worked with Coeliac Queensland for a number of years after being ...Read More

Nicholas Kerswell

Nicholas Kerswell

Nicholas Kerswell is a Provisional Psychologist currently completing his Doctor of Psychology (Clinical) at Queensland University of Technology. After ... Read More

Glen Harriss

Glen Harriss

Glen Harriss is the Executive Officer at Coeliac Queensland, where his role is to provide leadership and direction to all ... Read More

James Daveson

James Daveson

Dr James Daveson is a Gastroenterologist with a special interest in coeliac disease. Dr Daveson is a senior lecturer with ... Read More


Coeliac Disease - A Conference for Nurses
Speciality Classification
Provider Type
12 hours
Start Date
End Date
12 hours
Price Details
$671.00 (two days)
Canberra ACT 2600
Mercure Hotel Brisbane, 85-87 North Quay
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