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  • Iron infusions? How often?

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    Old 02-24-2015, 12:34 PM   #1
    teresamichele
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    Iron infusions? How often?

    Hi! A few years ago my doctor did a CBC and an Iron and TIBC test. The CBC was off in a way that indicated iron-deficiency anemia and my iron saturation was 7%. We tried pills - up to 3 a day - and saw no change. They finally did 3 iron infusions over 6 weeks (every two weeks). My CBC improved to normal in almost all areas and my iron saturation went up to 12%, which is still low but better than 7%!

    They're not sure why I'm anemic - I have a short period and a colonoscopy and upper endoscopy showed no issues. I'm clearly not absorbing iron through my GI tract but the infusions seem to work fine.

    I just had a CBC done again, though, since my hair is falling out and I have the headaches, etc. again. The numbers are worse than they were when I had the infusions, but I no longer see the doctor who prescribed them, and my other doctors won't prescribe them since it's not their area. I called the hematology department at the hospital they're all through, and I see a hemtaologist tomorrow.

    I've printed off all of my lab results for him, from the time around when I got the infusions before, but I'm wondering if it would be silly to suggest to him that we set up a schedule of iron infusions? It looks like by the 6 month mark, the infusions were "wearing off" and by a year, my numbers were awful again. I'm thinking regular infusions might help get my iron saturation to a good number and I'd get my hair back!

     
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    Old 02-24-2015, 06:52 PM   #2
    MountainReader
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    Re: Iron infusions? How often?

    I had my first infusions in December, one week apart. I now go in for monthly labs to see if I need any additional ones. While my PCP was willing to be the lead, I ended up having my Gastroenterologist be my primary lead for this one. I have absorption issues contributing to my iron deficiency.
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    Old 02-25-2015, 06:45 AM   #3
    teresamichele
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    Re: Iron infusions? How often?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by MountainReader View Post
    I have absorption issues contributing to my iron deficiency.
    Do you know what those issues are?

    The fact that infusions work for me but pills don't would imply the GI system is the issue, but I've had the colonoscopy and the upper endoscopy and they didn't see damage.

     
    Old 02-25-2015, 09:43 PM   #4
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    Re: Iron infusions? How often?

    My absorption issues are unique to me so I'm not sure my info will help you.

    I have SEVERE acid reflux issues and have been on PPI's for many years. They are impacting my absorption. Also, I had surgery for the reflux years ago and now have less stomach surface. That too is impacting my absorption.

    I too had tons of GI testing over the years. When my anemia hit bad last August, my GI doc looked over my years of labs and testing in considering the issues for absorption.

    I do know that if I didn't feel good about my answers from the GI doc, they were going to do a referral to a Hematologist.
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    Old 02-26-2015, 07:09 AM   #5
    teresamichele
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    Re: Iron infusions? How often?

    Thanks a ton! I saw the hematologist yesterday and he was pretty awesome. I do have GERD and take Nexium but it's pretty well controlled. I don't even have to watch what I eat (well, not for that - I have diabetes and CHF so carbs and sodium are not my friend).

    We're starting infusions next week, though, so I'm hopeful I'll feel better in a few weeks!

     
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