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Old 05-19-2008, 05:16 AM   #1
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robinhy HB User
B12 anemia and iron overload

I've been struggling with health issues for five years - hormonal inbalances, mainly thyroid and adrenals. However I am rather non-responsive to the meds. About 3 years ago I tested with low ferritin - it was about 8. So I took iron supplements - OTC. 3 months latter went back for retesting, ferritin 238, huge jump, over the upper limit but docs didn't seem concerned.

Went to another doc later. She found mildly low B12 at 393 with elevated MCV and Homocystein (spelling?). So I started taking brewers yeast. At first I felt better than I had in the past 5 years but after a few weeks i started getting worse. So I added vit c to my brewers yeast to help with absorption. Big mistake!!! The brewers yeast has a small amount of iron in it and vit c greatly increased absorption of iron. I suspect i know have iron overload (mild I hope) with B12 anemia. Is this possible? What role does folic acid play in iron levels?

i realize in the case of iron overload i should go see a doc asap but I've had some nightmare experiences wiht the local docs I'm more concerned they will get things wrong and do more harm than good. Is there a name for a doc sho specializes in blood conditions involving anemia or overload? (the doc who found low B12 is a four hour journey and I have to pay out of pocket - currently not an option)


Old 05-19-2008, 07:16 AM   #2
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ChristineVA HB UserChristineVA HB UserChristineVA HB User
Re: B12 anemia and iron overload

You should see a hematologist. If you have true iron overload, they will send you off to your hospital to "give blood." If you are on iron overload, I don't believe you can actually donate it.

Iron overload should correct itself on its own, quite quickly, with removal of the iron. If it does not, you need to look into possibly having a condition called hemachromatosis. I doubt you have that since your previous ferritin level was 8.

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Old 05-19-2008, 07:38 AM   #3
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robinhy HB User
Re: B12 anemia and iron overload

I agree that it's probably not hemachromatosis but it is weird how fast my ferritin levels climbed. Is iron overload common with mild B12 deficiency? Does folic acid interfer with B12 blood test results or are there other tests that work?

I found a hematologist. Before I can actually make an apointment I have to speak with him first so that he can decide if I should come directly to him or go via a GP first- not until Friday does he take phone calls directly (I live in Germany and the system is different here).

Old 05-19-2008, 08:53 AM   #4
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ChristineVA HB UserChristineVA HB UserChristineVA HB User
Re: B12 anemia and iron overload

I'm just not sure on the B12/folate issue but hopefully someone here will chime in soon!

Old 05-20-2008, 07:28 PM   #5
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ChickyChat HB User
Re: B12 anemia and iron overload

Any time your MCV and MCH are elevated along with B12 being anywhere near a low, It's a B12 deficiency, as much as My Dr. has treated me this way. Some people are deficient of B12 at much higher levels than others.

I'm not sure about the iron overload. It isn't my expertice.

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