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    Old 03-29-2005, 07:46 AM   #1
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    Confused over blood test results

    Back in November, I was diagnosed as being slightly anemic and put on iron supplements. At that time I was told my iron level was 118 with normal range being from 120-261. Another doctor who had the same results, quoted my level to be 8. I think they were referring to two different things. Is one ferritin and the other iron? I am confused. Anyway, after being on iron for three months, I had more bloodwork and was told that my level was now 16.
    I am assuming that this is good news. Does anyone know what these numbers mean, and what the normal range is? I am totally lost here!

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    Old 03-29-2005, 05:49 PM   #2
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    Talking Re: Confused over blood test results

    It sounds as if the 8 and 16 are referring to the Ferritin. This number reflects the storage of iron and is usually the "gold standard" test for iron deficiency. Do not confuse low or "deficient" iron levels with anemia. One can be very low in iron and not anemic. However, very low iron levels over time can lead to anemia. Iron Deficiency Anemia is one of the most common forms of anemia especially in menstruating women. It is usually very easy to correct with simple iron supplements. The fact that your Ferritin level has already risen by 8 points is a very good indication of your ability to respond to the supplements. Althouth 16 is still considered "low" is it not classified as "deficient." Once your Ferritin level falls below 10 it reflects a lack of adequate storage to contribute to replenishing your blood supply on a regular basis and can lead to anemia. I would guess you are no longer anemic? Check your Hgl score. This should be 12-15 for women although 11 is considered normal for some. Hope this helps.

    Old 03-29-2005, 06:11 PM   #3
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    Re: Confused over blood test results

    The numbers that you quoted sound more like Serum Iron which is the larger numbers, and Hemoglobin which are the lower numbers. The serum iron level is how much iron is available in the blood. The hemoglobin is how much oxygen is carried in the blood by the red blood cells. The Ferritin level is the amount of stored iron that is held in reserve over the amount needed on a daily basis to provide iron to the blood. It is all confusing, but if you have a diet that is adequate in iron nutrients then the supplement is quite enough. Usually, there has to be a disease process going on to keep iron supplements from being adequate.

    Old 03-30-2005, 06:39 AM   #4
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    Re: Confused over blood test results

    Thank you both for responding! It is so nice to be able to depend on these boards for answers. I don't know what I'd do without it!

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