Eating ice was the first sign of my anemia, my Ferritin was 2 at the time. When you have G/B you usually need to get IV iron therapy from a Hematologist due to malabsorption resulting from your surgery. How is your B-12?
I was told that eating ice is just a symptom and does not cause the actual anemia. You should contact your Bariatric specialist or a Hematologist for advice. FLFLOWERGIRL
Interesting! I have a friend of mine who's hgb went down to 6, while on a trip south. She craved ice! I thought it was interesting. I never got below 8, but have had 6 units of blood since 2004, and never really craved ice...Wonder why ice is craved...need the fluid? Usually a craving means the body needs something that's in the craved item. odd...
But no, there's no way that eating ice can make you anemic!
I have litterally been eating at least 7 pounds of ice a day (this is the size of the bag I purchase at the store) for at least 4 years. I would tell my doctors this even my gastric bypass doctor who I adore and they would just laugh at me. All this time I have known it was the anemia but they were giving me the "your iron is borderline normal" but I have no clue if they were looking at the ferritin levels and the complete iron studies. It took going to the hospital for something else to finally get them to say "no wonder you are craving ice, your hemoglobin is only 5"...it was nice to get some validation FINALLY!!!
I drive everyone around me crazy. I do know sence I got the 3 units of blood recently I do not want to ice as much. Right before I went to the hospital sometimes I was eating 2 bags of ice a day (14 pounds!!)! I knew it was getting worse but how was I going to get a doctor to beleive me when in the past they told me it was OCD or mental and I should go to a behavioral specialist....talk about wanting to scream.
For me the craving is something that nothing else in the world will satisfy. It is not only the cold but the thirst factor (I am really thirsty at times) and also just the pure crunching. I don't even suck on the ice...I just chomp on it right out of the bag before it even melts. My mouth is literally watering just typing about it. Sometimes the cravings are so bad I cannot sleep at night or I don't want to go to work in teh morning becasue I just want to lay in bed and eat ice and read!! I have 3 chunks out of my teeth because of the ice chomping but i refuse to get them fixed before I am done or close to done with eating the ice otherwise I will have to do it all over again!
Eating ice is a form of PICA which is tied directly to being anemic. I don't think anyone knows why it is that way it just is from what I've been told.This is along the same lines as people that want to eat dirt and hair...just be glad it's only ice!!!
Eating large amounts of ice is a sign that your ferritin is low. I chewed ice for years. When I went to my first hematologist appointment, the first thing he asked was did I chew ice. I said yes, he then asked to see my finger nails. He said I had very low ferritin level which was 2 and due to the recent ulcer bleeding, I was anemic. But my ferritin was low way before I became anemic. It was not until my Hgb went to 8 that I was considered anemic. It took many Iron IVs and blood boosting injections before they could be my hgb above 12. Now I am at 15 but my ferritin is still low. No on seems to have figured out where all this ferritin is going. I just go about three times a year for infusion to keep the ferritin above 70. The only other medical problem that I have is being hypothyroid, yes I am on medication for that.
I've always heard that eating ice was a sign of anemia but numerous months ago when I started craving ice, I never thought about it. All my life, I had heard that.....since I've started taking iron, I no longer eat or crave ice. It is amazing. The only time I do crave it is when I'm on my period and having a very heavy loss of blood. I can tell I've lost a lot of iron because I start to eat ice and then I take some extra iron.
I don't know why we crave ice....but it is true....