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Mac2 02-16-2009 08:44 AM

Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
Hi,

Just wanted to ask a question. My ferritin is now at 22 after 5 months of iron pills, and the other blood test I had for anaemia was 'normal'. If I had a Vit B12 deficiency would this have showed up in these tests? Or, would this have been a totally different test that they would have to do separately. It doesn't make sense to me that they wouldn't test for everything!

Thanks

Mac2

gemini123 02-16-2009 09:03 AM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
[QUOTE=Mac2;3886931]Hi,

Just wanted to ask a question. My ferritin is now at 22 after 5 months of iron pills, and the other blood test I had for anaemia was 'normal'. If I had a Vit B12 deficiency would this have showed up in these tests? Or, would this have been a totally different test that they would have to do separately. It doesn't make sense to me that they wouldn't test for everything!

Thanks

Mac2[/QUOTE]

Hi there do you have the values of the test results if you do it may be useful to post them up :)
I was unsure of the actual values as they just told me to take iron tablets so i went to the GP and asked for a print out of the blood test results, i found this helpful. My last blood test showed they did not do a routine B12 test.
I am not anaemic but i have low ferritin of 8.8

Mac2 02-16-2009 09:19 AM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
Hi,

I too am not anaemic and my first ferritin test came out at 10.

The receptionist at my local GP is the one to give the results and on asking her the readings for the anaemia test all I could get out of her was that it was 'normal'. Next time I visit my GP I shall ask for a printout off him as I am not sure that the receptionists can actually see that info judging by their reactions!!

Thanx.

FLFLOWERGIRL 02-16-2009 12:38 PM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
Mac2--The CBC or FBC is a standard for blood cells. The B-12 is a separate stand alone test for B-12 serum only. It has to be tested as well and folate too. This can also cause anemia. Anemia results show up in the FBC by reading the Hgb, Hct and RBC counts. Always get copies and file them for future reference. If you are/were not anemic and have been on iron supplements for 5 months now and gone from 10-22, if I read that correctly, how much iron and what type are you taking? You may need a higher dose. Keep us posted.

Mac2 02-17-2009 06:52 AM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
Hi FlFlowergirl

Thanks for replying.Yes you are right, I have gone from a ferritin of 10 to 22 in five months. Do you think that is slow progress?

The stuff I am taking at the moment it called Feroglobin, it is a slow release capsule and has 24mg iron (as fumerate), zinc 12mg, copper 2000ug, folacin (as folic acid) 500ug, vit B12 10ug, vit B6 5mg. I take one of these per day plus one iron pill (14mg) which I got from the local supermarket which just has the iron in it. I am also eating more red meat etc.

The reason I am asking about the B12 is that I seem to have a few of the symptoms of this deficiency i.e. weakness, fatigue, dizziness, lack of balance, pale appearance, sore tongue on eating anything spicy, diarrhea, shortness of breath and chest pain (which I put down to my asthma), this has been much worse over the last few months, tinnitis. I also feel hot all the time and have done so for a couple of years. I have seen people writing about this on the boards. I am so hot I have the heating off for most of the days in sub zero temperatures much to the disgust of my family!

I am due at the doctors on Friday so I will ask for this test.

Thanks

Mac2 x

P.S. I also feel itchy a lot of the time, anyone know what that's all about. Mostly upper body, especially arms and back of shoulders.

FLFLOWERGIRL 02-18-2009 12:18 PM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
[QUOTE=Mac2;3888056]Hi FlFlowergirl

Thanks for replying.Yes you are right, I have gone from a ferritin of 10 to 22 in five months. Do you think that is slow progress?

The stuff I am taking at the moment it called Feroglobin, it is a slow release capsule and has 24mg iron (as fumerate), zinc 12mg, copper 2000ug, folacin (as folic acid) 500ug, vit B12 10ug, vit B6 5mg. I take one of these per day plus one iron pill (14mg) which I got from the local supermarket which just has the iron in it. I am also eating more red meat etc.

The reason I am asking about the B12 is that I seem to have a few of the symptoms of this deficiency i.e. weakness, fatigue, dizziness, lack of balance, pale appearance, sore tongue on eating anything spicy, diarrhea, shortness of breath and chest pain (which I put down to my asthma), this has been much worse over the last few months, tinnitis. I also feel hot all the time and have done so for a couple of years. I have seen people writing about this on the boards. I am so hot I have the heating off for most of the days in sub zero temperatures much to the disgust of my family!

I am due at the doctors on Friday so I will ask for this test.

Thanks

Mac2 x

P.S. I also feel itchy a lot of the time, anyone know what that's all about. Mostly upper body, especially arms and back of shoulders.[/QUOTE]


This is just my opinion, but I think that you would do better with a higher dose iron to build the ferritin stores. Slow release iron is low, but it sounds like you have really good things to help balance iron. 38mgs total are quite low for such a low ferritin. It will take a while at that rate, and it's already a slow process from many. How much did your doc prescribe for you? I think that when people start out at lower levels of ferritin and combined with anemia that it takes longer to get to 10 ferritin. After that it gets a little faster I think. Keep us posted.

Mac2 02-20-2009 04:44 AM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
Hi FlfLOWERGIRL

Went to the docs this morning for a sick note as I am suffering from a relapse with the dizziness/balance probs and while there asked her to do a B12 test and she said that this was not an option. She would have put me forward for one but she said that as my last hgb test was 13.4, which is within normal range, the lab would not actually do it. She said that it would have shown on the test I have just had because the cells would have been a different size, which is fair enough.

I told her what I was taking as regarding iron suppletments and basically she didn't have a clue!!! Oh my god, why is it that every time I go, it is me that makes suggestions and points them in the right direction. I surely should become a GP, they know very little about most things!! Loads of money for sitting there referring people, yeah!!!

Anyway she is having to get in touch with a haematologist to see if what I am taking is ok and if I can safely up the dose. Mad or what, she was sitting there with her medical book (could have done that myself), for something as simple as prescribing iron pills, sad or what?

Mac2

FLFLOWERGIRL 02-20-2009 12:19 PM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
[QUOTE=Mac2;3891926]Hi FlfLOWERGIRL

Went to the docs this morning for a sick note as I am suffering from a relapse with the dizziness/balance probs and while there asked her to do a B12 test and she said that this was not an option. She would have put me forward for one but she said that as my last hgb test was 13.4, which is within normal range, the lab would not actually do it. She said that it would have shown on the test I have just had because the cells would have been a different size, which is fair enough.

[B]Yes, your doctor is correct, cell changes are noted on the FBC/CBC AND you are not anemic which makes the difference to your doctor. I feel that it's always a good idea to have a B-12 count when you have a low ferritin. There could be something in the works. Many doctor's don't even check B-12in the presence of anemia, which should most definately be done. When anemia is present the results of the FBC can be skewed by iron and B-12 deficiency co-existing. Often this can be missed.[/B]


I told her what I was taking as regarding iron suppletments and basically she didn't have a clue!!! Oh my god, why is it that every time I go, it is me that makes suggestions and points them in the right direction. I surely should become a GP, they know very little about most things!! Loads of money for sitting there referring people, yeah!!!

[B]I completely understand where you are coming from on that note. Our healthcare is really our responsibility, doctors are only participating in a Plan of Care, and of course, practicing medicine.[/B]

Anyway she is having to get in touch with a haematologist to see if what I am taking is ok and if I can safely up the dose. Mad or what, she was sitting there with her medical book (could have done that myself), for something as simple as prescribing iron pills, sad or what?

[B]My doc told me that he no longer treats children, and knew nothing about iron supplements. He said go to the pharmacy and take what they recommend. So, I did just that. I took Ferris Sulfate (an iron salts based iron), 3X daily and ended up in the ER. My GI saved me after I developed Enteritis for 3 months and lost 15 pounds later.[/B]


Mac2[/QUOTE]

Mac2 02-21-2009 05:09 AM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
Hi FlFlowergirl

How did you end up in ER? Was it because of the iron pills. Did you take too much or was it because they are salt based. And, what is enteritis?

What size pill was it, because 3x daily seems to be a normal dosage for someone that is iron deficient. See, this is what scares me, I am terrified to overdo it when I don't get much joy from my doctors and have no faith in them. My GP did not ring me yesterday so I will wait till her call and see what she says after speaking to the haemotologist.


Thanks

Mac2 x

FLFLOWERGIRL 02-21-2009 10:06 AM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
Mac2--I ended up in the ER because I didn't know what else to do. I had tachycardia 133 P and very high BP and felt really ill, but was no longer anemic. My MCV still remained severely low at 65, I think this had a lot to do with it; by having small cells, different in shape and appearing pale. By this time my Hgb had returned to normal at 12.9. It took 2 months to get from 8.5 to 12.9 taking ferris sulfate 3X daily. Yes, they are salt based, and for me it was way too much for my body to handle. Enteritis is just a fancy name for diarrhea, but not the typical kind. This is probably TMI, but it would wake me in the morning from my sleep. This went on for 3 months and I lost 15 pounds. By the time I made it to the bathroom, I was finished the minute I sat down. It was very hard on my body. I had to stop the iron on and off for a while and was told I had to have IV and could no longer take iron supplements. By the time I got to the Hematologist, he put me back on the oral iron. By this time I was at a 10 Hgb and anemic for the second time. I was too ill to have IV iron at that time. I was taking 65 mgs of elements iron 3X. I then went to a GI friendly iron at 300mgs a day and I even take it on an empty stomach with no problems. The thing about iron is, if it doesn't agree with you, discontinue it. I was pretty close to a blood transfusion and oral iron was the only way I could get around that so I took it even though I was slowly becoming ill, I didn't know better at that time and my PCP didn't help me. I know a little more now, LOL. I also have acid reflux and this irritated my esophagus to no end, I felt like I was bleeding. Don't be scared of the iron, like I said, if it doesn't agree find another, believe me you will most likely find one that works for you that is if you absorb supplements in the first place. It takes a lot of persistence, not giving up and patience. Patience was my biggest lesson. Hope that answered your questions. Keep us posted.

Mac2 02-22-2009 07:10 AM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
Hi FlFlowergirl

You have been through the mill! It must have been so awful for you. You seem to have everything under control now though and I appreciate your input and vast knowledge of this condition:)

I can also sympathise with the GERD as my 12 year old daughter has suffered from this and still has flare ups. It was an awful time for us when it all started because there is nothing you can do from them, she was in so much pain.

Mac2

robinegg 02-24-2009 08:46 PM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
[QUOTE=Mac2;3891926]Hi FlfLOWERGIRL

Went to the docs this morning for a sick note as I am suffering from a relapse with the dizziness/balance probs and while there asked her to do a B12 test and she said that this was not an option. She would have put me forward for one but she said that as my last hgb test was 13.4, which is within normal range, the lab would not actually do it. She said that it would have shown on the test I have just had because the cells would have been a different size, which is fair enough.

I told her what I was taking as regarding iron suppletments and basically she didn't have a clue!!! Oh my god, why is it that every time I go, it is me that makes suggestions and points them in the right direction. I surely should become a GP, they know very little about most things!! Loads of money for sitting there referring people, yeah!!!

Anyway she is having to get in touch with a haematologist to see if what I am taking is ok and if I can safely up the dose. Mad or what, she was sitting there with her medical book (could have done that myself), for something as simple as prescribing iron pills, sad or what?

Mac2[/QUOTE]

HI Mac2
Sadly this is wht so many people go undiagnosed with B12 deficiency is the old way of thinking.......
If you have PA then it will show on a CBC as a change in the cells.....But you DO NOT have to be anemic to be B12 deficient I suffered with sever deficiency and all my CBC was normal...In my opinion it is a dangerous way of thinking if you are presenting with any symptoms you MUST be tested and if she wont find someone who will.......If you have a problem with B12 it will continue if you are not treated multi vitamins and diet will not help it...My mother is low in B12 very low and here MCV is around 95 which is way to high MCV levels are elevated in Folate or Vit B12 deficiency......
I would recommend the following tests for you....
B12 serum
uMMA
Homocysteine
Red Cell Folate
Active B12....

Myself and all my children are deficient so is my older sister my daughter is iron deficient and my son and I have lwer levels of ferritin seems quiet common with B12 def.........

Hope this helps and the best of luck to you.......

Mac2 02-25-2009 05:49 AM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
Hi

Thanks for your reply. I will try again to get this test done next time I am at the docs. So frustrating isn't it, jack of all trades, master of none that is what they are!

MaC2

Mac2 02-25-2009 10:19 AM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
The GP has given me an iron pill called Fersaday 100mg, ferrous fumerate 322mg. It says on the box that it is 322mg of ferrous fumerate which is equivalent to 100mg ferrous iron. She has prescribed one per day.

Is this any good and does that mean I am actually getting 100mg elemental iron. I get so confused:)

Mac2

tibby2 02-26-2009 11:18 AM

Re: Vitamin B12 deficiency
 
[

oh my god,you are so right!b12can be implicated in so many things,i believe it should be routinely tested for,particularly with people presenting with depressive type symptoms.gp's are so ignorant in so many ways its terrifying.
my ferratin is low,with no aniemia,although I definatley feel aniemic.& when I asked for my b 12 to be tested it was at 390,which is not horrendusly low,but I have noticed a huge improvement in my mood since I've brought the b 12 up to 500 even though my ferratin related symptoms are still not great .'sometimes its hard to be a women' lol


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