B12 deficiency- doctor will only give tablets

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I wander if anyone can help,

Several years ago my blood showed a B12 deficieny <100 however I was also diagnosed with depression and my doctor believed the deficiency was due to diet (he didn't believe I wasn't vegetarian because a teenger wouldn't become deficient otherwise) I therefore started self-medicating with liquid and tablet suplements and the level went up and for several years I have been borderline and mildly symtomatic (mild tingling, fatigue, bouts of depression and difficulty concentrating) however no doctor has taken this seriously.

Recently however the tingling and numbness got worse and my level is again low= 127, my doctor believes this is mild and (after much pushing) has agreed to give me a prescription for tablets 100micrograms a day. This is more than I have been getting but will it help?

Can anyone advise how to make them give me injections and will the tablets help or just skew future blood tests? Thanks

1 like, 4 replies


4 Replies

  • Posted


    i dont know what country you live in but please look up the site for PAS - pernicious anaemia society.  They have so much information that will help you as your b12 is low and needs to be sorted.  If you live in the UK you will find a phone number for the society and you can phone them to get them to help you with the information you need to give to your doctor.

    it seems so difficult to get a doc to actually listen to their patients nowadays but please dont give up as you need help.

    good luck.

  • Posted

    Hi , i hate to say but not many GP'S are clued up on b12 def, plus that reading will have some inactive b12 in it,  you should first find out if your absorbing b12 your gp should run other tests, you should really in on injections , as they say tablets only get into the blood, but injections get into the cells where its needed, your folate and ferritin should be at a good level also x
  • Posted

    You do have a very low level, and I'm very surprised that he has offered you tablets without checking the reasons you are so low. There are further blood tests that can be done, for intrinsic factor ( this is not always reliable and can give false negative results). MMA and homocysteine are also tested for.

    Do you have any severe digestive problems, Crohn's, IBS, coeliac, or diverticulitis? Have you had stomach surgery, or any surgery? The anaesthetic can deplete B12 quite drastically.

    As Isabel suggested the Pernicious Anaemia Society website is a very good source of information and help. They can provide information leaflets for GP's to explain just how serious low B12 can be, and give the current treatment guidelines.

    If you do absorb B12 from the tablets it may have an effect on future blood tests, my guess is, they won't work, as they rely on the digestive process to absorb the B12. For you to have this level, you can't be getting it from your diet,

    Sublingual ( under the tongue) sprays or lozenges would be a better approach if he still refuses to treat you. But please try the PAS first. 


  • Posted

    I would suggest that you find another doctor who will listen to you without delay.

    You clearly need B12 injections.  Many countries in Europe and Japan all treat when levels fall below 500.  When I mentioned this to my Fathers doctor he immediately agreed to give injections.  They just don't know all the facts.

    Help yourself by finding a new surgery and going in to speak to a doctor and continue until you find one who will help you.

    I was anaemic 2 or 3 times between my 20's and being diagnosed in my 50’s and ended up getting viral thyroiditis due to low immune system and heart block.

    I spent my 30’s with two small children utterly exhausted wondering why I was having constant heart palpitations which made me feel constantly anxious.  My Doctor told me this was ‘a normal heart’.  During my pregnancy I slept constantly and at the beginning could hardly put one foot in front of the other.  If I had been diagnosed earlier who knows if I would now have a pacemaker?

    I do hope you can find someone to help you.

    Good luck.



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