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  • Can someone help decipher these blood test numbers?

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    Old 12-19-2014, 08:02 AM   #1
    littlej00
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    Can someone help decipher these blood test numbers?

    I have slowly become anemic over the years and no cause has been found yet. My numbers keep getting worse with no response to oral or IV iron, and no GI abnormalities of any kind. These are the numbers that came back high/low from my latest blood test:

    Hemoglobin = 11.3 (L)
    MCV = 75.6 (L)
    MCH = 24.0 (L)
    MCHC = 31.8 (L)
    RDW = 18.0 (H)

    Iron, total = 18 (L)
    TIBC = 464 (H)
    % Saturation = 4 (L)
    Ferritin = 1 (L)

    Last edited by littlej00; 12-19-2014 at 09:50 AM.

     
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    Old 12-22-2014, 10:45 AM   #2
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    Re: Can someone help decipher these blood test numbers?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by littlej00 View Post
    I have slowly become anemic over the years and no cause has been found yet. My numbers keep getting worse with no response to oral or IV iron, and no GI abnormalities of any kind. These are the numbers that came back high/low from my latest blood test:

    Hemoglobin = 11.3 (L)
    MCV = 75.6 (L)
    MCH = 24.0 (L)
    MCHC = 31.8 (L)
    RDW = 18.0 (H)

    Iron, total = 18 (L)
    TIBC = 464 (H)
    % Saturation = 4 (L)
    Ferritin = 1 (L)
    You must feel awful!!!! My ferritin was negative at one point. Are you eating a diet high in iron? I Started eating cream of wheat or cream of rice in the morning with a hard boiled egg and I think that helped
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    Old 12-23-2014, 05:44 AM   #3
    littlej00
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    Re: Can someone help decipher these blood test numbers?

    Thank you for your response. I do feel very awful! I have been fighting it for so long, I don't know how much longer I can keep it up. I already eat a lot of iron rich foods, and the doctors have said that since I don't respond to treatment, just eating more iron in my diet isn't going to do anything. It sucks!

     
    Old 12-26-2014, 02:41 PM   #4
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    Lightbulb Re: Can someone help decipher these blood test numbers?

    I know you said no GI issues, but has Celiac been ruled out? I thought maybe an absorption issue could be a possibility and Celiac has been implicated with higher RDW numbers -
    What do you think?

    Last edited by mod85; 12-26-2014 at 06:43 PM.

     
    Old 12-26-2014, 03:03 PM   #5
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    Re: Can someone help decipher these blood test numbers?

    I really feel that when I cut out gluten for 1 month that my iron absorption increased! Maybe worth a try for you? I think I am sensitive to it even though I am negative for celiac.
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    Old 12-29-2014, 07:33 AM   #6
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    Re: Can someone help decipher these blood test numbers?

    Hello Ladies. It's interesting that you bring up Celiac, because my mom has it. But I have had 2 upper endoscopys and a capsule endoscopy and the full celiac blood panel -or whatever it's called- by 2 different doctors and they both said everything was normal, along with many other GI tests, so I guess it's just not an absorption issue. I went gluten free for 8 weeks but I pretty much felt the same.

    I recently bought a hemoglobin test, just like the ones diabetics use, but it only tests hemoglobin. I've read that once your ferritin and iron get real low, hemoglobin is next and that scares me a little. Does anyone have any knowledge on this? I also bought women's one a day vitamins and iron pills. They have never helped me before but I am so desperate for iron!

     
    Old 12-29-2014, 07:35 AM   #7
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    Re: Can someone help decipher these blood test numbers?

    Hello Ladies. It's interesting that you bring up Celiac, because my mom has it. But I have had 2 upper endoscopys and a capsule endoscopy and the full celiac blood panel -or whatever it's called- by 2 different doctors and they both said everything was normal, along with many other GI tests, so I guess it's just not an absorption issue. I went gluten free for 8 weeks but I pretty much felt the same.

    I recently bought a hemoglobin test, just like the ones diabetics use, but it only tests hemoglobin. I've read that once your ferritin and iron get real low, hemoglobin is next and that scares me a little. Does anyone have any knowledge on this? I also bought women's one a day vitamins and iron pills. They have never helped me before but I am so desperate for iron!

     
    Old 12-29-2014, 08:16 AM   #8
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    Re: Can someone help decipher these blood test numbers?

    Have you been working with a hematologist? Have you had a series of IV iron infusions, not just one or two, like ongoing over months? Ever had a small bowel biopsy done (that is the most accurate test for celiac). It takes at least six month of gluten free diet to see a difference in absorption. You need plenty of Vitamin C also to absorb iron properly. Has chronic GI blood loss from ulcers, inflammation, etc been ruled out? What about your periods? If heavy, you might benefit from a BCP that reduces your period flow. Just some ideas to ponder and discuss with your Drs.

     
    Old 12-29-2014, 11:07 AM   #9
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    Re: Can someone help decipher these blood test numbers?

    Thanks for the reply. Unfortunately (I guess!), all GI tests have concluded that there is absolutely nothing wrong digestive-wise. I was not instructed by anyone to go gluten free, I was just trying to take matters into my own hands after my last doctor took 3 months to respond to me (including giving me my test results). I was fed up and thought that I had Celiac. When I found out everything was normal after the capsule endoscopy I stopped with the gluten free diet. In 5 weeks I am seeing what will be my third hematologist in the last 5 years. One thing that all my doctors have agreed on, is that treating the iron deficiency without first finding the cause doesn't make sense. That being said, I have had 2 iron infusions. I have very light periods, so it's not a bleeding issue or a digestive issue. I'm not sure what else that leaves!

     
    Old 04-21-2015, 08:25 PM   #10
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    Re: Can someone help decipher these blood test numbers?

    Not sure if your question was answered, but there are patterns that specifically indicate the type of anemia a person has. Your pattern is very specific to iron deficiency: L levels across the board with H RDW and TBIC. The cause of the deficiency is the question, which as others said are likely due to GI issues or menstruation. Mine follow the pattern for iron deficiency and always have, only this time things are a little off. Low across the board except elevated WBC, normal RBC and normal ferritin. So had bone marrow biopsy today. Did you ever figure it out? I know this is a somewhat old post.

     
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