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New to B-12 Deficiency

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Old 09-27-2007, 10:37 PM   #1
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alaska_free HB User
New to B-12 Deficiency


My neurologist just diagnosed me with a B-12 deficiency. For the past 7 months, I had problems with neuropathy. I experienced burning, pin pricks, pain, tingling. It started in the right foot and moved to the left foot. In the last two months, symptoms progressed fast. The neuropathy moved to the knees and I started getting weakness in the hands and having problems with my bladder. During those months, I dropped alot of weight and found it difficult to keep weight on. I was also tired but blammed it on being a full time grad student.

I was finally refered to a neurologist because of the progression of the neuropathy. The did numerous labs. The B-12 came back at 155. They ordered more test to determine why it was this low (still waiting on results). The B-12 was normal in April (317). My neurologist sent the results to my family dr and requested more labs to be drawn. When I got there, he listen to my symptoms and wanted me to start B-12 injections and diagnosed it as a b-12 deficiency.

I am all so new to this. I am shocked it went from 317 to 155 in under 5 months. I am mad that it took a neurologist to find the problem. Then my family dr comes in and saves the day by starting the injections. Now, we don't know how much damage is done or if we can reverse it.

I am supposed to give myself a b-12 injection every day for 7 days, then 1 a week for a month. then 1 a month for couple months. I am on day 3 and have noticed changes. I am more awake and less tired and I haven't experienced any problems with my feet burning. Could it be working this quick? What side effects are possible with the B-12 injection.


Last edited by alaska_free; 09-27-2007 at 10:39 PM.

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Old 09-29-2007, 06:26 PM   #2
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Heckofagal HB UserHeckofagal HB UserHeckofagal HB UserHeckofagal HB UserHeckofagal HB User
Re: New to B-12 Deficiency

Hi Alaska,

I became hypothyroid last year and found out it affected alot of things for me, one of which my B-12 level. I tested at 536 and was told by by general practitioner that this is 'in range'. (range is 200-1100) However, I saw a naturopath as I was still feeling very ill and my GP would tell me to see my endo and my endo would tell me to see my GP, and I heard this naturopath was top notch especially in the thyroid arena. My naturopath said they recommend supplements for anyone testing under 800. I was eager to try as I was having the tingling in my arms and legs and thought this might help, as I've heard the neuropathy is a symptom of low B-12. At that point I had also been having issues with my eyes. Did not feel my eyesight was worse but DEFINITELY had issues trying to focus. It was an issue that was hard to explain but had been bothering me for over a month and I just had gotten used to the idea this was another one of those hypo symptoms I would have to deal with. That night I took my first dose of a B12 sublingual megavitamin. When I woke up that morning my vision was REMARKABLY improved. Everything just seemed more clear and vivid. The change was so quick and drastic that I wondered if it was related to the B12 and when I did some research I did discover that B12 is related to eyesight as well. The neuropathy took a bit longer to get rid of, but have not had any more issues with that either. So yes, I think after 3 injections you WILL notice a difference, I noticed after 1 pill. And to be honest you really should have started supplementing earlier but unfortunately our docs don't tell us this. I've learned other countries also expect you to be 800 or higher. Also, your body will simply pass any excess B12 you might be getting, so you cannot overdose on B12.

Good Luck!

Last edited by Heckofagal; 09-29-2007 at 06:27 PM.

Old 09-29-2007, 10:53 PM   #3
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Re: New to B-12 Deficiency


I have to agree that this should have been treated earlier. Back in April 317 was considered normal. Now, I am learning it was on the lower end of normal. The recent B-12 was 155, so that feel in the deficiency range.

I haven't notice any significant vision problems yet. I have noticed some balance issues and would walk down the hall and run into the side of the wall or door. I never put two and two together that this was related to a B-12 deficiency. After being on B-12 injections for 5 days, I have noticed an improvement.

I was pretty clueless with the symptoms that I was experiencing. I found it easy to blame my weight loss, neuropathy, balance problems, fatigue, and bladder incontinence on my crazy grad school schedule. I never realized until just this past week that these were signs of a B-12 deficiency.

I am somewhat angry with my family dr because he knew that I had neuropathy and it was progressing. He didn't take any action to do any labs. It was the neurologist that found it. I am not sure I want to continue going to him-trust issue. Once we get the levels up, I can't risk the levels getting low again. I want to find a family dr who had experience dealing with B-12 deficiency and help me manage it.


Old 10-11-2007, 08:54 PM   #4
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oceangirl19 HB User
Re: New to B-12 Deficiency

I had neurological problems for over 8 months (starting with eye problems) before anyone tested my B12 level, which turned out to be 194. And then it took 2 more weeks for me to get started on injections. Talk about RIDICULOUS!!!!

And my neuro is still trying to dx me with MS, however I am pushing to be tested to find out why my B12 is so low. By the way, I highly recommend you do the same if you haven't already. It's good to know why it's low (why you aren't absorbing it). I have to go for blood work tomorrow for that).

In conclusion, right now my B12 level is still only 700 after 6 B12 injections over 9 days, apparently my body was lacking that essential viatamin.

As for my problems, due to having them for so long they unfortunately got worse before they got better and are still present my neuro said she thinks they may start going away if I get my levels above 1000, but she thinks my levels have been low for over a year...ugh...hopefully things will get better soon!

Old 10-11-2007, 11:51 PM   #5
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Re: New to B-12 Deficiency


They are still trying to figure why I am not absorbing it. My family dr decided to jump in and order a blood test to confirm the B-12 deficiency called MMA. It came back normal. He claims there is no B-12 deficiency. We are waiting on more test to determine why I am not absorbing it.

My neurologist and pain dr both say it is because of my low B-12 level and because I got relief with the B-12 shots. I have noticed that when the B-12 shots wore off last week after 4 days, my vision was really strange. Also, the nausea and the burning came back. Did an extra shot and woke up the next day feeling great.

I am hoping we can find out what is going on. My family dr has agreed to continue the B-12 shots because it is working. He has no clue at this point why I am getting relief. DUH! I seriously question him and have decided to see a new family dr. I will ask this new dr to check my B-12 level.


Old 10-22-2007, 05:52 PM   #6
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obieb HB User
Re: New to B-12 Deficiency

I was recently diagnosed with b12 deficiency after18+months of complaints to the doctor for other ailments. I started a 5 day course of b12 injections and then once a week for 4 weeks and then once a month. When should I expect the doctor to do bloodwork to check my b12 levels?

Last edited by obieb; 10-22-2007 at 05:55 PM.

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