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  • Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

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    Old 03-18-2010, 05:22 PM   #16
    herekittykitty
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    Nexium can interfere with the absorption of iron or any vitamins or minerals that you get from your food.

     
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    Old 03-24-2010, 11:52 AM   #17
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    First, thanks again to those of you who responded! I believe what you're saying about the Nexium but for some reason can NOT get my gastro doc to buy into it. I asked him if I could try reducing my Nexium to one pill every other day to see if that would help with my ferritin levels and he didn't have a problem with that, so I'm going to try that and see what happens when I get my bloodwork done again at the end of April.

    I told him that I am taking my iron pills with orange juice and he said with the Bifera tablets, it probably doesn't matter if I do that or not because of the way these pills work. This is what I've found out about Bifera (copied and pasted info from their site):

    Unlike all other over-the-counter iron supplements that only include non-heme iron, Bifera includes heme iron, the natural carrier of iron found in red meat. Recent studies show the heme iron found in Bifera offers 25 times greater absorption than other iron supplements. Due to its highly-efficient absorption, heme iron is generally free of the side-effects, including stomach irritation and constipation, commonly found with conventional iron supplement products. As a result, the iron supplement Bifera can be taken with or without food and does not need to be taken with Vitamin C.

    Also says that it has 25 times greater absorption than other over the counter iron supplements, potentially as effective as intravenous iron. (But that this statement hasn't been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. I got this info from a flyer from the doctor.

    NOW....with that info, doesn't it seem like my iron and ferritin levels would soar after taking 2 of these pills daily for a month and then 3 pills daily for the next month? Again, my iron went from 11.4 to a 28 (I thought it was 29 as I reported earlier) and my ferritin levels only went from 3 to 6.1. Did it take awhile for all of you to have your iron and ferritin levels reach normal levels? I AM concerned about this, but all the gastro tests I've had come back normal (for which I'm TRULY thankful, but still don't know why my levels are not good). I guess I'm especially concerned with my ferritin levels since I now can see that my hair is MUCH thinner that it used to be and as a woman, I want to keep the hair I have!! And then of course my energy levels are low, and I don't want to be like this.

    Also, does anyone have any ideas on where else I could be bleeding that they haven't checked? Do you think I should go see a hematologist to get to the bottom of this or should I just listen to my doctor and not worry about it? I am so confused!!!

    Again, thanks in advance for any info you give me. You don't know how much it means to me!!

    -Wendy

    PS: Sue, are we still very similar in our experiences with what I've typed above? If we are, it's nice to know that there is someone else out there like me!

     
    Old 03-24-2010, 06:08 PM   #18
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    It does take quite a time for your ferretin to come up - dont despair!

    Keep taking your iron for a few more months.

    It might be a good idea to keep taking a low dose iron pill even when you are totaly better, to stop your iron levals slipping back again.
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    Old 03-30-2010, 11:55 AM   #19
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Numpy View Post

    Also, does anyone have any ideas on where else I could be bleeding that they haven't checked? Do you think I should go see a hematologist to get to the bottom of this or should I just listen to my doctor and not worry about it? I am so confused!!!

    Again, thanks in advance for any info you give me. You don't know how much it means to me!!

    -Wendy
    Wendy, I am in the same health position as you and I have been seeing a Hematologist for 3 years now. If you decide to go to a hematologist, I would suggest that you not get your hopes up too high for better results. My doctor is still circling the same tests and can not figure out why my ferritin level continues to drop.

     
    Old 04-05-2010, 06:47 PM   #20
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    Gosh, I can't thank everyone enough--all this info has been so informative!! I'll tell you what, tho, when it rains, it pours. I have been in the ER a couple of times in the last month because of heart palpitations (actually found out that they are PVCs)--felt like my heart was going to beat out of my chest. They kept up for hours and hours (and the last time it was 5 days straight!) and when I got the discharge papers, it said that anemia can cause these heart palpitations. I can not believe all the stuff anemia can bring on!!

    Anyway, got referred to a cardiologist to make sure that the PVCs are harmless and benign and went to see him today. He is almost SURE that they are but want to give me an ECHO cardiogram (or something like that) on Wednesday to make sure that's what's going on BUT as we were talking my anemia came up and he said I SHOULD see a hematoligist just to try and find out the reason for my anemia because my gastro doc and he (the cardiologist) know some about anemia but not everything. He said there is a fantastic hematologist in my area and he said to give him a call and set up an appointment. I'm thinking I will. Can't hurt and if I can get to the bottom of this I would be thrilled!

    Again, thank you SO MUCH for all the responses. It is so comforting knowing other people are in the same "boat" as I am. You have all been so awesome! (and Jonnstar--I AM going to keep taking that iron pill after this gets cleared up; I don't want to go thru this again if I can help it!! Good advice!).

     
    Old 04-06-2010, 10:52 AM   #21
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Numpy View Post
    I have been in the ER a couple of times in the last month because of heart palpitations (actually found out that they are PVCs)--felt like my heart was going to beat out of my chest. They kept up for hours and hours (and the last time it was 5 days straight!) and when I got the discharge papers, it said that anemia can cause these heart palpitations. I can not believe all the stuff anemia can bring on!!
    I wanted to clarify this: It wasn't determined that anemia CAUSED my heart palpitations at all--it was only listed as one of several causes that could bring them on. They very likely could have nothing to do with my anemia at all, too! I was just surprised that anemia could be a cause.....

     
    Old 04-06-2010, 10:58 AM   #22
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    Sorry to hear about your trips to A&E, as I have said before you're story follows mine really closely, but with events happening in reverse. I know how frightening palpitations can be, have had them for years, 2 heart ablations even, and only now are they manageable, I like to think it is because of my thyroid/ferritin level causing them now and once they're sorted they will stop.

    Please let us know how you proceed from here, sounds like you're on the right track at last!

    Sue

     
    Old 04-06-2010, 11:34 AM   #23
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    Numpy, My niece has celiac and was severely anemic from not absorbing iron from her foods and internal bleeding from the celiac. She had to have blood transfusions. They put her on bedrest until her anemia was resolved because they said she could have a heart attack if she exerted herself too much. She couldn't go to school, had to take a break from her dance classes, no playing, etc.

    I had heart palpitations myself. More like my heart was "flipping and flopping". It was a weird sensation. I have since found out that low sex hormones can cause this, thyroid issues can cause it, and so can anemia. I always felt like mine was low sex hormones because it would happen more the week or so before my period. I am now using progesterone cream, taking Armour thyroid, and iron pills, so I'm not sure which one helped this issue.

     
    Old 04-08-2010, 04:21 AM   #24
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    Hi, I know exactly how you feel. I had a blood test in January because I was just feeling so lethargic and hair was thinning quite badly. Bloods came back with ferritin of 4, serum iron, 6 and hemoglobin 11.3. Started iron tabs on 26 Jan and meanwhile took organic blackstrap mollases and ate an iron-rich diet, lots of liver, and i got a tincture called yellow dock which is supposed to really increase ferritin. Had bloods done yesterday and my ferritin is 23, serum iron 16.7 and hemoglobin 13.2 so now all normal apart from ferritin which will hopefully improve even more over the coming months. Hope this helps

     
    Old 04-09-2010, 05:39 PM   #25
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by herekittykitty View Post
    Numpy, My niece has celiac and was severely anemic from not absorbing iron from her foods and internal bleeding from the celiac. She had to have blood transfusions. They put her on bedrest until her anemia was resolved because they said she could have a heart attack if she exerted herself too much. She couldn't go to school, had to take a break from her dance classes, no playing, etc.

    I had heart palpitations myself. More like my heart was "flipping and flopping". It was a weird sensation. I have since found out that low sex hormones can cause this, thyroid issues can cause it, and so can anemia. I always felt like mine was low sex hormones because it would happen more the week or so before my period. I am now using progesterone cream, taking Armour thyroid, and iron pills, so I'm not sure which one helped this issue.
    I was tested for celiac disease and that apparently came back normal because I don't remember my doc telling me I had that--sure sounds like your poor niece was very sick with it.

    AND, you explained my heart palpitations exactly--flipping and flopping. Thankfully, I got the results of my ECHO cardiogram today and it came back all normal. I'm so glad I'm not having them as a result of heart damage or anything REALLY dangerous, and I guess I will have to learn to live with them. Thankfully I haven't felt them recently!! You know, I think my second round of them that landed me in the ER because they wouldn't stop (and were continuous for 5 days or so total), I think it WAS right before my monthly cycle. Low hormoness??? Hmmmm, something else to check into! Thanks for that info herekittykitty!

    Also, Sue--we'll have to keep each other posted on our progress!! Hopefully we can get this stuff under control!!

     
    Old 04-09-2010, 05:47 PM   #26
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by niknak71 View Post
    Hi, I know exactly how you feel. I had a blood test in January because I was just feeling so lethargic and hair was thinning quite badly. Bloods came back with ferritin of 4, serum iron, 6 and hemoglobin 11.3. Started iron tabs on 26 Jan and meanwhile took organic blackstrap mollases and ate an iron-rich diet, lots of liver, and i got a tincture called yellow dock which is supposed to really increase ferritin. Had bloods done yesterday and my ferritin is 23, serum iron 16.7 and hemoglobin 13.2 so now all normal apart from ferritin which will hopefully improve even more over the coming months. Hope this helps
    Maybe I should try the molasses--I've never heard of yellow dock. I'll have to check that out. It sure seems like your levels came up quickly!! Well, lots more quickly than mine. I'm taking three "super" iron pills/day. Bifera is the name of the iron pill--it's supposed to be as powerful as a transfusion when you take one/day and I'm taking 3 of these pills a day and my levels haven't gone up like yours did! Niknak71--how much molasses did you take and was it everyday? I'm willing to try anything safe and natural that won't harm me to try and get my levels up! My hair is thinning and I just want to feel like the old Wendy! Thanks for the info!

     
    Old 04-10-2010, 07:31 AM   #27
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    Maybe you should have your progesterone and estrogen levels checked... I have found all of these problems seem to go hand in hand and I have them ALL.

    Even though you know that your heart problems are not serious, it is still disturbing. Most of the time you go around not noticing what your heart is doing, it's just doing its job. Then you start with the flip flopping and you can't help but notice what it's doing. I'm so glad mine has stopped. I hope you find the answers you need to get yours under control too.

     
    Old 04-12-2010, 03:28 AM   #28
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    With the molasses, I took 1 tablespoon twice a day with orange juice and my ferrous fumerate. I also followed an iron rich diet, liver twice a week, raisins, nuts, and the yellow dock. This is supposed to really shoot your iron up and I'm surprised my levels went up so quickly. I have to have another blood test in two months time so it will be interesting to see if my stores have gone up more. So glad my hemoglobin and serum iron are normal, two less things to worry about.

     
    Old 04-12-2010, 11:49 AM   #29
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    Its just an idea, but try taking Slow FE (iron). Its otc and it is safe enough for pregnant women. Also check to see if your potassium is low. If so get a potassium suppliment. (In some cases if your iron is low so is your potassium.) Good luck!

    Jenneypooh

     
    Old 04-13-2010, 01:51 PM   #30
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    Re: Low Iron & Ferritin - what to do???

    where do you buy yellow dock tincture? i went looking at whole foods and couldn't find them.

     
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