B12

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Hi 

My daughter is 23 and recently had a blood test which says she has a b12 of 187.  She has been feeling extremely tired for weeks and gets dizzy some times when she stands up, she has had an ongoing headache which she is under the neurologist for, we were putting her tiredness and dizziness down to the headache. Is this reading considered low?  I also have low b12 and my mum had low b12. Her tests has been back for about a week but the surgery has not asked her to book an app to discuss this. I would be grateful for any advice on this as I am unsure what is normal levels.  Regards B 

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12 Replies

  • Posted

    187 is low. Different blood testing labs have different deficiency levels, some are 190, 150 and 110. In some countries the level is 500. Ideally levels should be over 700. The test isn't always accurate either. She needs to go to her doctor and say that she thinks she would benefit from having b12 injections. It's not easy when doctors won't listen or just brush things under the carpet, I've had similar problems. I had to see 3 different doctors before finally being given injections, but tell her not to give up because her levels will probably just keep falling and making her feel worse.

    The guidelines for doctors are to treat symptoms and not just the deficient levels.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for your reply, I will make sure she makes an app with a dr and maybe go with her to make sure he listens 
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    • Posted

      I'm in the U.S. and on the lab report the low end of normal is 211.  Yes, she's not only low, but showing classic signs of B12 deficiency/PA.  Plus, you have a strong family history for this.  She should follow up with the doctor for treatment, and good idea for you to be there, too! GL!!  

      p.s. hoping your name implies your greatness as a person of Irish nationality! wink

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    • Posted

      Ha ha yes , I am Irish but have lived in the uk for 20 years, thank you for your reply 
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  • Posted

    I am in UK, my GP said b12 levels range 180-1000. You may be told boarder line? But insist that you need your daughter sorted, especially as its in the family. Also ask to check for thyroid as the two seem to be linked. You are entitled to a second opinion if not happy. Yes go in with her and be determined. My first reading was 170 which after 3 months went to the 163. Was careful with my first answer as did not know where you were from. But comments are just my opinion.
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  • Posted

    Hi. There are 3 generations of my family with b12 deficiency that cause neurological symptoms. Your daughter needs alternate day loading injections followed by every 8 weeks. In the uk the BCSH guidelines for cobalamin deficiency state 200 is deficient. Ensure her folate is in top end of range to ensure her injections work at optimum. Her ferritin (iron store) should be good too. When receiving b12 injections the b12 uses folate to be able to metabolise to the body's cells to do repair. Once metabolised the body will use ferritin to produce new blood cells. Ensure treatment is not delayed to prevent irreversible nerve damage.
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    • Posted

      Thank you Heather, also read your private email. We have booked an appointment with the GP for next week so lets hoe with all the symptoms she is getting they will start injections
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    • Posted

      Hi Heather you seem to know a lot about this type of thing. My daughter and my sister both suffering from b12 deficiency. Have finally got daughter on 3 month injections but they will not investigate further now they know she has intrinsic factor. She keeps being anaemic and they just give her iron for a few months and forget about it. She is so low as she feels she will be like it for the rest of her life. She is only 21 and they discovered the deficiency at 16 after I had been taking her to the doctors since she was 10. Only on injections since summer 2013. We also have thyroid problems in family and some people seem to think that may be connected. She had two under active results but seemed to not think this was important. Any advice would be really good. Also my sisters level was 160. Her doctor made her wait 3 months and next test was 120! He told her she didn't need b12 as her folate was ok! Luckily I told her to insist so he agreed to the loading dose then check again in 6 months. Can she insist on 3 monthly injections ? Why will they not just do this. She has felt so terrible she thought she might keel over. Any help would be appreciated. Thank you
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