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Old 02-17-2005, 10:05 AM   #1
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Question Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

I am feeling a kind of numbness in my feet (fingers) from last 10 months. I have well controlled (Hba1c-5.8 to 6.5%) type 2 diabetes from last 5 yrs. My total cholesterol is 175. I am told that this kind of “neuropathy” problems won’t come until you have an uncontrolled diabetes (Hba1c above 7.2%) for a long time. I know that one may get neuropathy even if some leg (some times neck) arteries/veins are blocked by cholesterol. What I am telling is I should not have experienced neuropathy problems. I am a kind of vegan i.e, I do not take any animal products. Very rarely I take some milk. This suggests that I am lacking some vitamins especially B12/Folic acid. According to www, if we supplement B12 and Folic acid, these nerve problems may be gone in about 12 to 18 months if they are in the initial stages of neuropathy. Yes, right now I started taking orally 1500 micrograms of B12 + 800 micrograms of folic acid per day. What information I need from you? Anybody in the same boat as me? OR any body tried this route and at least got help for neuropathy problems? Thanks

 
Old 02-18-2005, 03:48 PM   #2
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Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

I am currently taking 2000 mg's of methyl b12 and a b100 mg complex everyday for nerve damage.. so far i only feel relief in my feet.I have yet to feel any releif in my upper extremeties!!
I have been diagnosed with periphal neuropathy!I have had this for the past year and have no idea as to why!!
From what i have learned about repairing nerve damage you are right about the time frame in the vitamins working but i dont believe it ever totally heals the nerves just the symptoms.I believe i will have to take b vits the rest of my life!!

 
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Old 02-20-2005, 02:28 PM   #3
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Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

whatamess, thanks for your reply. I have another question. Did the Doc found that you have big red blood corpusules due to lack of vit B12/folic acid or did he do any other test such as homocysteine in your blood to determine the lack of vit b12?? Sometimes you may take vit b12, but if you lack interinic factor in your stomach, taking vit b12 may be useless.

 
Old 02-23-2005, 03:29 PM   #4
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Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

Hi phd-1993
I was told by my doctor that my b12 tests came back normal.
The result was 293..That didnt make me happy.So i went online reading on my own..I understand that if i have stomache problems i wont absorb it.I have done alot of reasearch on my own ,before taking anything.
I am taking methyl b12 2000mcg's a day along with a b100 complex..Also many other vits,to make sure i am balanced out..I have had wonderful results so far with my neuropathic pain in my feet..I am still waiting for results in my upper extrememties..So to answer your question..No i havent had all the tests you mentioned.I am going on what i have learned on my own!!
I have seen 5 docs in the last year.Trying to figure out whats going on with me.Not one has mentioned b12 to help me with the nerve pain.NOT ONE!!!
I had such severe pain in my feet that i could hardly walk,when i found this info online ,by myself through research..Hence why i didnt go back for more testing from the docs!
Take care,i hope your vitamins work well for you also!!Just make sure you take b12 and bcomplex .As usually when you are deficient in one you are deficient in all..Also dont take them at the same time as your other vitamins..

Last edited by whatamess@35; 02-23-2005 at 03:33 PM.

 
Old 02-25-2005, 12:18 PM   #5
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Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

Hello,
I am new to this website. I am going through the strangest episode that I think you may relate to. My older brother has pernicious anemia, which is the B12 deficiency in which one lacks intrinsic factor in the stomach. About 7 months ago, I started having some major neurological symtptoms, including burning in buttocks, right hamstring and thigh all the way to my foot. Now I have aching joints all on my right side. I have been checked for B12, but I was told the test came back normal. Now I have ringing in my ears. I have been put on Neurontin 600mg 3x per day, but it seems to have very little effect. Do you suggest using B12 even though the doctors say that I am normal as far as b12 is concerned. I'm looking for a miracle here. I've been married 18 months, and in that time my health has gone from perfect to pathetic. I've been to more doctors and specialists than I can count. I had a Disc removed from my spine last April of '04. I was fine after the surgery for about 3-4 months. I started having burning on my right upper body. I was given a CT-Myelogram which I was told came back as normal. Then after about 2-3 more weeks, I had all these neurological freak outs. I didn't even know this stuff existed until I started feeling it. Anyway, I've been told it's all in my head and that I have nothing that would show up on a test to reveal something is wrong with me. I know that I feel WRONG. With my brother being diagnosed at 32 and I'm 29, I wonder if there is a link. Please advise as I said, I'm looking for a miracle. Can I just go get B12 at the pharmacy? My brother has to shoot it into himself about once a month.

Rich

 
Old 04-07-2005, 12:32 PM   #6
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Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

please take the sublingual b-12 if you doctor want give you the injections. I know personally that lack of this vitamin will cause nerve problems.

 
Old 04-08-2005, 08:40 AM   #7
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Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

phd,

I'm in, have been, in a similar boat as you. I became a vegetarian (not a vegan) way back in 1992. A year and a half later, I was feeling weak legged and having tingling in my toes. My vitamin B12 level was checked, and it was very low at 98 (normal range runs 250-1100). Up to that point, I had taken no vitamin supplementation of any kind. The doctors gave me a b12 injection, and I started taking 500mcg of cyanocobalamin (b12) orally, not sublingually, daily. I started feeling better and figured I was covered with a daily pill. Three years later, my b12 was checked again, and I was told it was in the normal range. It turns out it was in the very low normal range, but the doctors didn't tell me that. Fast forward to 2002, I was catching colds frequently and not feeling well overall. By this time I had dropped my daily B12 intake to 50 mcg daily (800%) assuming that was more than enough. A CBC was done and showed a slightly high MCV value (which can indicate a B12 deficiency). The doctors didn't make an issue of it, a b12 level was not checked. Then, one day in March 2003, I came into work, sat down at my computer, and, as if someone turned on a switch, I felt an immediate tingling and numbness in my fingers and toes, followed a few weeks later by a loss of balance, and some other strange neurological symptoms that didn't last.

Its two years later now, and I am improved from where I was after having montly B12 shots and taking daily 1000 mcg doses of methylcobalamin (a more useable form of b12), but I am still much diminished from what I use to be. Both my peripheral nerves and my spinal cord were damaged by this. I still have tingling in the feet, and my joint position sense (balance) is still impaired but better. I'm a 37 year old male. I have subsequently been diagnosed with Celiac disease, and have autoimmune (ANA) anitbodies, both probably contributing factors to my malabsorption of Vitamin B12. I now eat meat once or twice a week, to be on the safe side.

You're doing the right thing taking the large dose of b12 daily, assuming this is a low b12 issue. Even with lack of Intrinsic factor, I think I've read that very large doses, even orally, get enough B12 in your system. But I'm sure if Intrinsic factor is the issue, you should be getting injections. Did you ever actually get your B12 level checked? I would guess if your balance hasn't been affected, and your knee reflexes aren't hyper, this hasn't affected your spinal cord (central nervous system) yet, and you will make a complete recovery over time, but it can take awhile. Good luck.

Eric

 
Old 04-13-2005, 05:00 AM   #8
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Post Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

Eric,

Thanks for the response. My B12 level is 159. Now I am taking almost 1500mcg of Vit B12 daily along with 1000mg of B-complex. Most people with low Vit B12 have high MCV, but my MCV is low. This may be because I also have low iron/ferritin. LOw B12 increases MVC, but LOw iron/ferritin decreses MCV. Hence my guess is that I am low on iron/ferritin also. I have recently given blood for iron testing. I will come to know shortly!

 
Old 04-13-2005, 10:33 AM   #9
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Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

Phd,

With a low b12 level like yours, it seems pretty certain your neurological symptoms are from a b12 deficiency. I'm glad you've caught it in time. Best wishes for a speedy recovery.

Eric

 
Old 04-17-2005, 03:45 PM   #10
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Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

I was diagnosed with Pernicious Anemia and polyneuropathy back in 1996 or so. My B12level was 76 and I had irreversible nerve damage do to the length of time I was so deficient. I still have polyneuropathy as a permanent companion. I lack the intrinsic factor and I also can't keep my level up where it should, I give myself a injection every other week and this will be forever, unless they come up with a cure of some kind. When I first started my shots, it took 3 yrs to get my level to 600, so don't count on instant feel good either. I also have some malabsorption problems with vit D, and magnesium which I take as a supplement along with sublingual B12 and the injections. Recovery depends on how long you were deficient and how low. I was for 4yrs, 76 for level and borderline dementia when first diagnosed, the most improvement I've had is my memory has come back almost 80% but it took 6 yrs for that.

 
Old 04-18-2005, 08:20 PM   #11
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Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

It is for energy but for a whole lot more. Try looking up Pernicious Anemia and you will find what a big deal it is. My grandmother died from it back in 1952 and I have permanent damage for lack of it. B12 is for the proper function of your nervous system, if that doesn't run properly the whole program falls apart. It keeps your nerve cells and red blood cells healthy, provides DNA makeup and lots more. Some people only need to take supplements while others like myself maybe do to a gastritis attack or gastric bypass lack the intrinsic factor (a protien enzyme)in the stomach needed to absorb B12, so injections are needed to bypass the stomach to go directly into the tissues. Pernicous Anemia is similar to MS in symptoms but it can be controlled where MS is unpredictable. B12 is what keeps you functioning.

Last edited by NancyH; 04-18-2005 at 08:23 PM.

 
Old 04-19-2005, 04:08 PM   #12
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Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

Have you had the blood test or bone marrow test for it? Mine was the Schilling test but it was inconclusive so I had to have a bone marrow aspiration test and that is when it was found. Believe me, before 1995 I never heard of a B12 deficiency or pernicious anemia. When I started my geneology back in 2000 I discovered my grandmother died of a b12 deficiency or rather the results of the lack of b12 complications. b12 isn't tested as part of the general chemistry lab work, it is through a consultation of a neurologist that eventually sent me to have lab work. I came ther complaining of electrical shocks that felt like a lightning bolt go through my top of the head to the feet and I thought I was blacking out when in reality people around me didn't know it happened, it wasn't even painful just startling, my memory was getting bad and my boss insisted I see a Dr cuz I couldn't find the correct words to use in a conversation, my pronouns were used incorrectly etc. My speech was slurred like a drunk and I don't even drink. I couldn't tell you what 99 from 100 was without working it out on paper and then still haveing a problem, I do lots of math at my job. He sent me on my way after an hour testing me for cognitive depression for lab work and that is how it works. When you can walk into a Dr office and they ask you "what is this"? and I answer in French there is a problem, cuz I don't know any french, but my grandmother use to sing to us in french as babies but she died by the time i was 4. It's a test that has to be requested for whatever reasons by another dr. I to have many nerve disorders, polyneuropathy, RSD, perepheral neuropathy. Your Dr may not see any signs of b12 def or your level has been tested without you knowing and it was normal. Neurologist tend to test for it as a precaution sometimes, my first neuro looked at my brain scan with all the lesions and sent me home thinking I was just getting old (I was 46) after the years of treatment most of those lesions are gone. I'm now 57.

 
Old 07-05-2005, 02:55 PM   #13
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Exclamation Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

I am 55 years old and have suffered from numbness and tingling in my feet and half way up my calves for about 3 years. I talked myself into thinking I had a neuroma but then the pain started and I could hardly walk. I went to a podiatrist and he gave me cortizone shots in both feet -said it wasn't a neuroma but didn't do anything to find out the cause. He wanted to give me Neurontin but I wanted to find a cause. So my family doctor put me through a lot of tests and said the only thing that came back unusual was that my B-12 was 403 and that was kind of on the low side. When I told her my mother and sister had Pernicious Anemia she did the Intrinsic Factor test for that. It came back positive so I didn't need further testing. She started me on B-12 injections (I had to go every day for a week and then once a month). I also had an EMG to confirm neuropathy. I am also on 300 mg Neurontin (generic form) twice a day and it's helped a lot. One thing that upsets me reading this thread is that some doctors do not think of a B-12 deficiency if you are in the "normal" range which is 200-1100. You can have a normal B-12 level and still have a deficiency. Thank goodness my doctor was on her toes. She said it isn't the first thing they think of. After reading about Pernicious Anemia and the damage it can do makes me want to kick myself for not taking it more seriously. We all thought Mom's condition was no big deal. Well I'm paying for that now. Keep at your doctor for further testing. I'm also taking sublingal methylcobalamin b-12 daily although they say they aren't sure how much I'm absorbing. My b-12 level is now at 1488 and I'm feeling so much better!!! I also take Foltx which is B-12, B-6 and folic acid. It's a perscription.
litersk

Last edited by litersk; 07-06-2005 at 04:04 AM.

 
Old 09-07-2005, 04:47 PM   #14
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Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

I don't know if this really applies to you guys but... MN\y daughter has just been diagnosed with "Cerebral Folate Defiency Syndrome". One of only 100 kids so far. Think may be many more. Her levels of folate are normal in the blood but low in her spinal fluid. Think some kind of metabolic problem with converting it from plasma to CSN. VERY few articles on it. Look at the New England Journal May and Aug 2005.

 
Old 11-27-2005, 12:01 PM   #15
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Re: Vitamin B12/Nerve problems

Lots of research by Life Extension Foundation in this country and in Japan about supplementing high doses of Methylcobalamin up to 40 mgs a day for neuropathy. (Sublingual). However keep in mind that neuropathy is present not due to a methylcobalamin shortage in your body so try to heal the problem from source first then supplement , you'll be surprised how it helps. It is expensive though !!

 
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