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View Full Version : feeling worse after blood transfusion and diagnosis?


kristen2026
08-11-2013, 11:48 PM
hi everyone,
this is my first post! it's so nice to know that others are struggling with anemia and hopefully someone will be able to help me feel less frustrated and confused about all the symptoms i have been experiencing.

i'm 25 years old; i have always been a super healthy, active girl,(marathon runner, p90X, all that jazz)and i even work as personal trainer. i do not eat meat so i have always been on the lower end of normal iron and hemoglobin levels, but i was simply advised to make sure that i took my daily vitamins to get the nutrients i am deficient in.

to make a long story short, my husband and i moved to oswego, illinois from wv in august 2012. in early November, i began to feel what i thought was a run of the mill sinus infection coming, with the largest symptom being pain behind the eyes and ears and severe facial swelling under the eyes and eyelids. like, huge baggy puffy eyes that made me look as if i had been beaten up! so i went to my primary care physician and was given antibiotics, which did NOTHING to clear up any of my symptoms. over the next 6 months, the swelling and the feeling of fluid and fullness in my head continued to get worse so finally at the end of may i went back to my family doctor for the like the tenth time asking her to help me again and see prescribed me prednizone and referred my to a sinus specialist (ENT). like most of the other times i went to see her, she had me to go to the lab for routine bloodwork to make sure nothing glaring had shown up, and by the time i made it home from the lab literally 10 minutes later, i recieved a call from her office saying i needed to get to an ER immediately because my hemaglobin was at a 5. i had no idea until i got to the hospital just how dangerous that is! just that morning i had run 11 miles...i wasn't experiencing any lack of energy, fatigue, headaches, or anything non-sinus related...none of the doctors could believe it.i received a blood transfusion and spent 3 days in the ICU for monitoring and my hemoglobin was a 9 when i left the hospital.

after a series of CT's and other bloodwork to be sure i wasnt bleeding internally or in my GI tract with nothing found, i had a bone marrow biopsy performed a few weeks ago and all it showed was an iron deficiency (praise GOD not cancer or aplastic anemia or something so serious!). at one point over the summer, my hemoglobin was at 12.5, and now it is back to 9 even though i have taken the iron supplements prescribed religiously and have increased the amount of natural iron sources in my diet.

the whole point of this post is that i felt absolutely normal besides having the heavy headed feeling and EXTREME facial swelling before the blood transfusion. since then, i have been a full on mess! so tired, weak, out of breath, and generally feeling disconnected from my body. i'm wondering if the blood transfusion made things worse, or is that even possible? i just don't understand how i could have felt completely normal with a hemoglobin of 5 to feeling like garbage and miserable with my iron levels higher. i have asked my hematologist about this and she basically brushes me off and acts as if i'm crazy. has anyone had a similar experience? any advice would be so appreciated! Smile