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Old 07-10-2013, 04:52 PM   #1
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Low ferritin, symptomatic Hematologist said not anemic

I have been feeling very run down and exhausted. The doc that is treating me for my thyroid wanted me to see a hematologist for what he referred to as suboptimal ferritin levels. My thyroid numbers have been up and down over the years. My ferritin is always low.

The hematologist was concerned about how bad I looked. She ordered a bone marrow biopsy and a whole lot of blood work. Fortunately, the biopsy was negative. My ferritin level was 19.20 (range 10.0 - 291.0). She said that my levels were in the normal range and I do not need any iron. She also stated that my iron saturation was good 28.09% (20.0 - 55.0) and saw no need for iron.

I have no idea what to think. I really liked the doctor, but I just don't feel well. I am very fatigued with zero energy. I'm not sure what numbers to post, she ran a whole lot of tests.

I don't know if I need a second opinion or this is just the way I am going to feel forever. Fortunately, my thyroid is good right now.

Any help would be appreciated. Below are my labs.

Thank you all so much,

Vonda

Iron 84.00 (50.0-170.0)
TIBC 299.00 (250.0-450.0)
Iron, % saturation 28.09 (20.0-55.0)
Ferritin 19.20 (10.0-291.0)
Vitamin B12 978.00 high (211-911.0)
Folate, serum >24.0
Erythropoietin 1106 (2.6-18.5)
Reticulocyte count, % 2.00 high (0.5-1.5)
WBC 4.40 low (4.8-10.8)
RBC 4.65 (4.2-5.4)
HGB 14.40 (12.0 – 16.0)
HCT 45.00 (37.0-47.0)
MCV 96.90 (81.0-99.0)
MCH 31.10 high (27.0-31.0)
MCHC 32.10 low (33.0-37.0)
RDW 12.20 (10.5-14.5)
PLT 196.00 (130.0-400.0)
MPV 7.30 low (7.4-10.4)
Neu % 61.50 (40.0-77.0)
LY % 25.50 (15.0-41.0)
MO % 10.20 (3.0-11.0)
EO % 1.20 (0.0-3.0)
BA % 1.60 high (0.0-1.0)
Neu % (ANC) 2.70 (1.5-6.5)
LY # 1.10 low (1.2-3.4)
MO # 0.40 high (0.0-0.2)
EO # 0.10 (0.0-0.3)
BA # 0.10 (0.02-0.2

NRBC (M) 0.00
Neutrophil % (M) 54.00
Band % 0
Lymphocyte % 24
Monocyte % 8
Eosinophil % 9
Basophil % 5.00
Metamyelocyte % 0
Myelocyte % 0
Promyelocte % 0
Blasts % 0
ANC (M) 1.84
Atypical lymphocyte # 0.00
Anisocytosis (size) 1+
Poikilocytosis (shape) 1+
Normal RBC morphology abnormal
Platelet estimate 200,000

Glucose 91.00 (74.0-106.0)
BUN 21.00 high (7.0-18.0)
Creatinine 1.00 (0.6-1.3)
BUN/Creatinine Ratio 21.00 (6.0-25.0)
Sodium 140 (136.0-145.0)
Potassium 4.90 (3.5-5.1)
Chloride 103.00 (98.0-107.0)
CO2 29.60 (21.0-32.0)
Calcium 9.00 (8.5-10.1)
Albumin 4.00 (3.4-8.1)
Total Protein 7.3 (6.1-8.1)
Globulin 3.70 (2.2-4.2)
A/G ratio 1.10 (0.8-2.0)
Bilirubin, total 0.71 (0.0-1.0)
Alkaline phosphatase 68.00 (50.0-136.0)
SGOT/AST 18.00 (15.0-37.0)
SGPT/ALT 23.00 low (30.0-65.0)
LDH 143.00 (100.00-190.0)

HIV-1/HIV-2 antibody screen non-reactive
ANA tier 1:40 high
Anti-nuclear ab screen, qual POSITIVE abnormal
ANA pattern identification HOMOGENEOUS abnormal
Rheumatoid factor, quantitative 10

Albumin, SPE 4.5 (3.5-4.7)
Alpha-1 globulin 0.2(0.1-0.3)
Alpha-2 globulin 0.7 (0.5-1.0)
Beta globulin 1.0 (0.8-1.4)
Gamma Globulin 1.0 (0.6-1.6)
SPE interpretation SEE NOTE (I could not find any notes on the lab work)

ESR 4.00 (0.0-20.0)

 
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Old 07-12-2013, 12:14 AM   #2
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Hi! Sorry you're feeling so rough, I know exactly how that feels. My ferritin was 11 a couple of months back and I felt like death warmed up. I would definitely get a second opinion as 19 is very low, my doctor didn't hesitate to give me ferrous fumurate 210mg 3 times a day. It's taken 2 months but I feel a whole lot better. I was getting chronic dizziness, nausea and extreme tiredness among many other symptoms - really bad anxiety being a bizarre one. It really is NOT fun at all, a lot of people don't report feeling better until their ferritin is 50 which you are well off, like me! Get back to the doctors ASAP. Good luck.

 
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Old 07-12-2013, 12:16 AM   #3
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PS. Your iron can be ok but your ferritin levels can be depleted. They don't always go hand in hand. Ferritin is iron stores in your body.

 
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Old 07-12-2013, 05:59 PM   #4
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Re: Low ferritin, symptomatic Hematologist said not anemic

Has your ferritin decreased since your last blood work?

Clinically, you are not iron-deficient. In iron deficiency, TIBC is very high (usually over 400), iron % saturation is low, ferritin is low, and HGB (below 11/12 for women) is also low. Your TIBC, iron saturation, ferritin, and HGB are all within normal ranges, though ferritin is on low side of normal.

Keep an eye out all your blood results and see if you see something trending downwards.

 
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Old 07-14-2013, 08:03 AM   #5
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Unhappy Re: Low ferritin, symptomatic Hematologist said not anemic

Anyhow, it is quite confusing. Everything I read tells me that my ferritin should be considerably higher. As much as I do not want to be iron deficient, I do want answers for my fatigue.

Thanks so much,

Vonda

Last edited by Administrator; 05-24-2014 at 05:31 PM.

 
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Old 07-19-2013, 10:34 PM   #6
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Re: Low ferritin, symptomatic Hematologist said not anemic

I know what you mean by feeling bad.

I just had blood work done today. My ferritin is 4, hg is 9.8 which is up from 9.1 and my crit is 23.

I was scheduled to have an iron IV infusion today but the doctor thought since my hg is up some that I should continue with the oral iron for another month and had levels checked again.

The problem is, I don't know how much longer I can feel this way and I understand that the oral iron takes much longer for results.

What advice does anyone have?

I hope you get some answers soon. It isn't fun.

 
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Old 07-20-2013, 06:28 AM   #7
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Re: Low ferritin, symptomatic Hematologist said not anemic

I would like to some more advice as well. It was my understanding that our ferritin needs to be in the 70's to feel well. I'm confused about my docs comment on the saturation and TIBC being normal that no iron is needed. My gut tells me to take iron so I am. Am I doing the wrong thing?

Thanks so much,

Vonda

 
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Old 07-20-2013, 07:01 AM   #8
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Re: Low ferritin, symptomatic Hematologist said not anemic

double post

Last edited by Kaybabyv; 07-20-2013 at 07:02 AM.

 
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Old 07-21-2013, 07:08 AM   #9
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Re: Low ferritin, symptomatic Hematologist said not anemic

I am also understanding that most docs want ferritin to be around 100. So yours is low. Does your doctor tell you why your ferritin is low? It is hard to know what questions to ask until you start to research.

When are you getting your levels checked again? Hope you find some answers.

 
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Old 07-25-2013, 08:16 AM   #10
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Re: Low ferritin, symptomatic Hematologist said not anemic

Your ferritin is low. Ferritin 19.20 (10.0-291.0). Most women don't report even feeling better till their ferritin reaches numbers in the 50-70's. My hair didn't even start growing back till my ferritin was in the 60's. Look up some of the side effects of having low ferritin. My ferritin was in the 60's last time I checked. I started with a 2 and had been taking iron for over a year. Having low ferritin can make you feel absolutely terrible and I think it's something that you should really look into. Just because your not clinically anemic does not mean that you are not low enough to make you feel bad.

I also wanted to add having low ferritin is not something you can fix in a month. I have been taking iron for over a YEAR. It takes a long while to get that number back up there and I know with a lot of my issues they can be related right back to directly having low ferritin. Anyone who says your ferritin is normal is wrong. It's WAY to low. I won't even argue it. That number takes a long time to raise.

Last edited by Heatherx5; 07-25-2013 at 08:18 AM.

 
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Old 07-25-2013, 08:25 AM   #11
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Re: Low ferritin, symptomatic Hematologist said not anemic

Quote:
Originally Posted by Heatherx5 View Post
Your ferritin is low. Ferritin 19.20 (10.0-291.0). Most women don't report even feeling better till their ferritin reaches numbers in the 50-70's. My hair didn't even start growing back till my ferritin was in the 60's. Look up some of the side effects of having low ferritin. My ferritin was in the 60's last time I checked. I started with a 2 and had been taking iron for over a year. Having low ferritin can make you feel absolutely terrible and I think it's something that you should really look into. Just because your not clinically anemic does not mean that you are not low enough to make you feel bad.

I also wanted to add having low ferritin is not something you can fix in a month. I have been taking iron for over a YEAR. It takes a long while to get that number back up there and I know with a lot of my issues they can be related right back to directly having low ferritin. Anyone who says your ferritin is normal is wrong. It's WAY to low. I won't even argue it. That number takes a long time to raise.

Heather,

Thanks so much for the reply. I have been taking iron Ferrous Fumarate 325 twice a day. Which iron do you take?

Vonda

 
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Old 07-25-2013, 08:29 AM   #12
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Re: Low ferritin, symptomatic Hematologist said not anemic

I was taking a very large does like you and it wasn't cutting it. I actually went to the health food store and talked to them about it and they pointed me in the direction of some stuff called "Hema-plex" absolutely amazing stuff. It's only 60 mg but it's a slow release form, since your body can only absorb so much iron at once it made more sense to me. My ferritin actually went from a 15 to a 30 in a month. It's amazing stuff!

I know it doesn't make sense switching from a large dose to a smaller dose but I strongly suggest looking into it. Also, Unsulphured Blackstrap Molasses is something to look into as well. It's nasty but a couple tablespoons a day will help a lot too.

Last edited by Heatherx5; 07-25-2013 at 08:34 AM.

 
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Old 07-25-2013, 08:37 AM   #13
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Re: Low ferritin, symptomatic Hematologist said not anemic

I want to post this here for you to see I know sometimes things get lost in the shuffle. It's a previous post on another thread.

Ferritin levels are a good way to detect IDA in the early stages because it's one of the first things to go. Having a low hemoglobin shows that the IDA is in a later stage. By the time your hemoglobin gets low it's time for iron, but why Dr's wait for that to happen is beyond me!

That is why I believe Dr's should use a ferritin test more often then not because it's a very early indicator of a problem before waiting for the last stages which are hemoglobin and hematocrit dropping. Ferritin takes months and years to raise and your body is putting the iron where it needs to be. Once your iron serum goes up it's going to start dumping back into your stores.

 
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Old 07-25-2013, 08:50 AM   #14
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Re: Low ferritin, symptomatic Hematologist said not anemic

Thank you so much. They list a couple of stores in town that carry it. I will go now. How many a day should I take? I am frustrated that I have to do this without my docs help, but I have learned they are not always right. We have to listen to our bodies.

I also take Synthroid. I have to be sure that I wait 4-6 hours after taking my thyroid med to take the iron. Makes it difficult to take more than 2 doses a day, if necessary.

Vonda

Vonda

 
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Old 07-25-2013, 08:54 AM   #15
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Re: Low ferritin, symptomatic Hematologist said not anemic

You are right and I'm sorry for you. My ferritin was a 60 last check and my Dr. says I can plan on taking iron for another year and to continue with the Hemaplex because it was working. There are 2 kinds, make sure you get the slow release! Just take one a day. It releases slow so your body is going to absorb more rather then all at once. It's also loaded with a lot of other vitamins that will aid in absorption. Give it a shot for a month, do your labs again. I think you will be surprised. I'm rooting for you!

Also talk with the people that are working there, I swear sometimes they were more helpful then my own Dr. there might be some other things you can do as well. Get some unsulphured blackstrap molasses, the health food store carries that too and it's high in iron, it tastes gross but well worth it!

Last edited by Heatherx5; 07-25-2013 at 08:55 AM.

 
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