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  • B12 Deficiency.. what the the exact causes?

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    Old 07-18-2010, 11:27 AM   #1
    Mitch5
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    B12 Deficiency.. what the the exact causes?

    I was wondering if anyone can help me... I am wondering what the exact causes of B12 Deficiency can be?

    I have this deficiency and I am determined to figure out the cause. I know I do not have pernicious anemia. That was ruled out. I used to take acid blockers years ago but I haven't taken any for about two years. I had a Celiac test. Negative.

    What else could cause this B12 Deficiency? What are the causes? I so want to figure out the cause! Thanks!

    Last edited by Mitch5; 07-18-2010 at 11:28 AM.

     
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    Old 07-20-2010, 02:04 AM   #2
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    Re: B12 Deficiency.. what the the exact causes?

    Can anyone help me out with the causes?

     
    Old 07-21-2010, 10:57 AM   #3
    happyfeet77
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    Re: B12 Deficiency.. what the the exact causes?

    My B-12 gets low as well, for me the docs have declared it an absorption issue. (even though I don't have bowel problems -- no Celiac, no IBS etc). There are other nutrients I don't absorb too. But the B-12 shots are great.

    How is your diet? Are you taking any meds? Do you have bowel problems?

     
    Old 07-21-2010, 02:48 PM   #4
    Mitch5
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    Re: B12 Deficiency.. what the the exact causes?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by happyfeet77 View Post
    My B-12 gets low as well, for me the docs have declared it an absorption issue. (even though I don't have bowel problems -- no Celiac, no IBS etc). There are other nutrients I don't absorb too. But the B-12 shots are great.

    How is your diet? Are you taking any meds? Do you have bowel problems?
    Thanks for responding.

    Can I ask what other nutrients you do not absorb either?

    I have both B12 Deficiency (number is 243) and Vitamin D Deficiency (<5 Vitamin D!). I was tested for folate (normal), magnesium (normal, but low end), phosphorus (normal), B1 (normal). Vitamin D has normalized with D3 treatment. I still have not started with B12 treatment yet. My cognitive thinking has gone down the tubes. My short term memory is messed up, sometimes I feel like I am in a fog. I can't stand it. I have some numbness and tingling as well. I assume (and hope) this all relates to the B12 deficiency.

    As far as bowel problems... I am also IgA Deficient which is an immune system issue that I have had since birth. It's called Selective IgA Deficiency. It basically only causes me to get more colds than the average person and yes, it can cause GI issues such as off and on inflammation in my GI tract but it never stays past a week or two. It leaves. So it's more than an irritable bowel since it can cause active inflammation but less than a Crohn's because it does not cause permanent damage. I also have something called mesenteric adenitis which is enlarged lymph nodes in my mesentry area of my intestines and that is due to my intestines always being in an active state because I do not have IgA at all (I have zero IgA). So the lymph node enlargement is a response to having to battle a little harder to get rid of infections and such due to this. I have reflux issues as well that come and go. My stomach also empties faster and slower at will, another mystery! The doctor at Mayo believes I have food intolerances that cause my stomach to go too fast or too slow depending on what it is bothered by. That creates some nausea and fullness when it happens.

    So I do have issues but they are not serious in nature per se. They do not seem to account for why I would have trouble absorbing nutrients... or maybe they do and I just don't know it. lol.

    For meds I am taking:

    Doxepin 25 mg at night for migraines
    Ginger Root for nausea that comes and goes
    Vitamin D3 5000 IU (currently)

    They tested me for pernicious anemia and celiac and both were negative. I definitely feel better lessening my gluten intake though. I know that much and I know I have a higher chance of getting Celiac due to my IgA Deficiency but every time it is officially checked it turns up negative. I don't know if that would rule out gluten intolerance though.

    As for diet... I do better on a low carb/higher protein diet. Sugar, carbs, dairy are issues for me. I feel better when I stay away from excessive amounts of sugar, white flour and dairy. My problem is I am not a big meat eater but I wouldn't say I am a vegetarian either. I eat meat sometimes for protein, not because I like it if that makes sense. But I wouldn't think the lack of protein has caused the B12 issue because I think I get enough even if I am not getting a ton. This is speculation but I also like my eggs and beans enough to assume I am getting protein even if it's not necessarily consistently from red meat.

    Last edited by Mitch5; 07-21-2010 at 03:06 PM.

     
    Old 07-21-2010, 03:57 PM   #5
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    Re: B12 Deficiency.. what the the exact causes?

    Hmmm....I don't know enough about GI stuff to know whether your off and on GI issues would cause malabsorption. Sounds plausible though!

    There's something called "intrinsic factor" that can be lacking in your digestive system and that will result in less absorption of B-12 but I don't know how you test for that...

    I asked about drugs because my husband is diabetic and I've heard that metformin can block b-12 absorption.

    The other nutrients that I don't absorb well are calcium, magnesium and vit d. There are probably others as well that we just haven't discovered yet. The calcium was a big issue. I wound up in the hospital b/c of it a couple of years ago -- it was frightening. I didn't know about the calcium until then. (tetany -- suddenly couldn't move my hands, toes for about 8 hrs until they gave me an iv of calcium)

    So I take 3000 mg of calcium each day, plus magnesium and vit d. Throw in some vit c for good measure too.

    Have you had your protein and albumin tested? I too feel better on a lower carb, higher protein diet but I do have a hard time getting enough protein.

     
    Old 07-22-2010, 10:04 AM   #6
    Mitch5
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    Re: B12 Deficiency.. what the the exact causes?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by happyfeet77 View Post
    Hmmm....I don't know enough about GI stuff to know whether your off and on GI issues would cause malabsorption. Sounds plausible though!
    I am going to see a GI specialist next Wednesday so I will definitely ask him about this. My guess is he might do some testing of his own. Maybe the dreaded scopes. I've had both the upper and lower endoscopies and while I don't think they are super horrible, they are not fun either. I am sure you have had them?

    Quote:
    There's something called "intrinsic factor" that can be lacking in your digestive system and that will result in less absorption of B-12 but I don't know how you test for that...
    Yes, I have. According to my endocrinologist he already tested for this and it was negative. It was a blood test of some kind. I was hoping that would be the cause and then be done with it but that test came back clean.

    Quote:
    I asked about drugs because my husband is diabetic and I've heard that metformin can block b-12 absorption.
    Got it. Yes, no, I'm not diabetic and on that drug.

    Quote:
    The other nutrients that I don't absorb well are calcium, magnesium and vit d. There are probably others as well that we just haven't discovered yet. The calcium was a big issue. I wound up in the hospital b/c of it a couple of years ago -- it was frightening. I didn't know about the calcium until then. (tetany -- suddenly couldn't move my hands, toes for about 8 hrs until they gave me an iv of calcium)

    So I take 3000 mg of calcium each day, plus magnesium and vit d. Throw in some vit c for good measure too.
    Wow, I bet that calcium situation was not a fun thing for you. I'm glad they found the problem and you are okay now!

    Quote:
    Have you had your protein and albumin tested?
    Yes, I have had those tested with the basic work up by the endocrinologist and they were okay. Vitamin D, Vitamin B12 and my C-reactive protein were the three tests that were off. I was even worked up by a rheumatologist because of the elevated inflammatory marker and he could not find an arthritis or rheumatism at all. My muscle aches and pains were then just classified as being due to the vitamin deficiencies and the CRP mild elevation is chalked up as unknown for a cause but to keep a watch on it.

    Quote:
    I too feel better on a lower carb, higher protein diet but I do have a hard time getting enough protein.
    I have to wonder if gluten intolerance can cause malabsorption? I know I feel better going gluten free yet any test for celiac is negative. However, I have been reading a bit on "non-celiac gluten intolerance" and if you read the literature it seems to indicate your B12 can lower due to this but because it cannot be easily indentified under the microscope as celiac doctors or regular doctors do not pay attention to this being a cause for vitamin deficiencies... more alternative medicine doctors definitely take it seriously.

    Last edited by Mitch5; 07-22-2010 at 10:06 AM.

     
    Old 07-24-2010, 05:26 PM   #7
    happyfeet77
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    Re: B12 Deficiency.. what the the exact causes?

    Good luck with the GI appointment next week! I hope they can provide some answers for you. Can you get a b-12 shot in the meanwhile? (if you are feeling badly)

    Thank you for sharing that you had the intrinsic factor test done! I will ask my hemo next week about it. Maybe that is part of my trouble. Anemia does seem to run in the family but it shouldn't be this darn bad.

    Gluten intolerance...wouldn't that cause gastro distress though? Or is it just if it's Celiac that you feel really badly? I thought they were the same thing...but I will have to read up on that more.

     
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