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  • Help! Iron deficient but not anemic...

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    Old 10-02-2013, 07:16 AM   #1
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    Help! Iron deficient but not anemic...

    Hi all,

    I am hoping someone can help me/give me some insight into their experiences with non-anemia iron deficiency. I am a female, 27 years old. Back in June of this year, my doctor ordered new bloodwork as I had been suffering from vertigo and some dizzy spells earlier in the year, so she wanted to cover all angles and see if we can detect the origin of these spells. When I was called back for the results, I was told that I had low iron stores, but that I was not anemic and that I had low HDL. Note that at this time when I had my results, I had NO symptoms except for being tired in the evening, which I thought was normal after a long day of work…Back then, I had no idea about what iron does and how it is used in the body. Fast track a few months and I am much more knowledgeable on the topic. Here are my numbers (note that I am from Canada and I know our doctors use different thresholds for lab numbers…)

    • Ferritin: 37 (normal iron levels are measured to be 80 and higher!!!)
    • Hemoglobin: 121 (normal level is 115 to 155) but my doctor mentions this is on the low end.

    About a month after these results (in July), I started having some odd symptoms: when I am hungry, I get shortness of breath, I get lightheaded and I also have rushing/whooshing in my ears. This is not to be confused with “tinnitus”, as I had tinnitus for a few years but it was never a whooshing sound. I basically just feel that my body is not getting the oxygen it requires. I guess I am getting these symptos because my iron stores are low? Otherwise, I can’t find an explanation for these strange symptoms. Basically, if I don’t eat by the time I can feel hunger, I get these awful symptoms so I always try to make sure that wherever I am, I have enough food to eat.

    Based on these results, my doctor put me on an iron supplement called PROFERRIN, which apparently is very effectively because it’s a heme kind of iron supplement (the kind that originates from animals). It has 11 MG per dose, and I was told to take it twice a day for the next 3 months, in addition to eating whatever iron-rich foods I can manage to eat.

    My question is has anyone experienced these symptoms? Having these symptoms makes me feel so alone. Anyone using Proferrin for your iron deficiency needs and if so, when did you feel better? I’ve only been taking it since last week (previously I was taking Easy Iron which was fine on my stomach but I wasn’t helping much). I am going away on a trip to the Dominican Republic in the next few days and I really want to have a good time, and not have this issue inhibit on me.

    Any advice/support is most appreciated.


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    Old 10-06-2013, 01:15 AM   #2
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    Re: Help! Iron deficient but not anemic...

    Ferritin: 37 (normal iron levels are measured to be 80 and higher!!!)<<<This is bad and this is actually one of the first thing that you lose with anemia. The first! Ferritin starts depleting then all of your other numbers will follow. I stopped reading at ferritin. This isn't normal and most people don't report feeling well till ferritin reaches 60's and higher. Having a low ferritin is the first indicator to a problem with iron.
    Every symptom you have I have had you are NOT alone. I am glad you are taking meds for it. It takes months and even years depending for people to get their ferritin back up! Hopefully yours starts working for you.

    Old 10-07-2013, 09:02 PM   #3
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    Re: Help! Iron deficient but not anemic...

    I had same symptoms like you, vertigo, dizziness, etc. I also live in Canada. My ferritin level was 15 at the time, my hemoglobin levels were always normal. You need to find the reason why is your ferritin level low. I have heavy periods and just recently I have found out that this is due to a low progesterone. I am taking steps to correct this problem too. If you want you can contact me for support. Good luck!

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