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Vitamin B12 dose

(14 Posts)
Kayden Tue 21-Jul-15 10:07:14

I have iron deficiency anaemia and also, according to my GP, "slightly low vitamin B12". I'm not sure of the numbers. I wasn't prescribed B12 supplements which is fine, I'm happy to buy my own but I'm not sure of the dose. Please could someone advise, or point me in the right direction of some useful information? Thanks in advance.

Pleasemrstweedie Tue 21-Jul-15 11:58:28

This may depend on how low your vitamin B12 actually is. It would be worth ringing your surgery and asking for the exact figure and the reference range.

It would be useful to look at something like this:

You can't overdose on B12. Any you don't need will be excreted.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 21-Jul-15 12:13:04

Have you been checked that you can actually absorb vitamin B12 if not you could take a bucket load and it would not make a difference.

Kayden Tue 21-Jul-15 12:26:20

I will ask for a print out of my results.

How would I know if I could absorb it, Lone? Is there some sort of test?

Pleasemrstweedie Tue 21-Jul-15 13:11:12

That's why I suggested the sub lingual lozenges. You should absorb through the lining of the mouth even if you don't absorb through the stomach.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 21-Jul-15 13:32:52

You need a blood test for intrinsic factor antibodies if they are present you can't absorb it. Sublinguinal B12 doesn't work for me I have to have injections.

Smcgettigan79 Tue 21-Jul-15 13:33:09

I imagine if they were worried they would have prescribed you something. I had low B12 and was told to get an injection of it every 3 months, now the levels are up they have reduced this to every 6 months.

There are a number of things that can cause B12 deficiency so, like I said, if it were worryingly low they would have investigated the cause further I think. I wouldn't worry too much but, as PP said, you can take supplements if it makes you feel better as any excess will be excreted or stored until you need it.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 21-Jul-15 13:35:51

Smc I have to disagree untreated low level of B12 can have very serious consequences and should be investigated and treated appropriately. It takes several years for liver stores to become depleted so low blood B12 indicates that there has been a long running problem.

Smcgettigan79 Tue 21-Jul-15 14:03:13

Lonecat - That was sort of my point. If there was cause for concern the doctor would have investigated further, so as s/he didn't - there is probably no need to worry too much.

Pleasemrstweedie Tue 21-Jul-15 15:27:38

Vitamin B12 needs to be above about 500 to ensure that there is no neurological damage. Many GPs, my own included, are happy if the level falls within the reference range which, in my area, starts at 191.

You cannot therefore necessarily assume that a GP will act when they should. If the GP in this case has bothered to mention that B12 is slightly low, then you can almost guarantee that there is an issue. If there is, it will be easily fixed, but it will be an issue nonetheless.

Get a print out OP. See exactly where you are.

Kayden Tue 21-Jul-15 15:35:35

I'd love to say that I have complete faith in my GP surgery but I'm afraid, I don't. I have chronic health problems and it's the communication between my surgery and the hospital that often fails. I've had lots of blood test results that haven't been communicated to me properly. The specialist nurse/consultant at the hospital have assumed that the GP have contacted me and vice versa. So, consequently I have been walking around unwell, needing medication doses adjusted or being significantly immune suppressed.

I was given a tentative diagnosis of peripheral neuropathy before I was found to have slightly low B12. I was seen at a different hospital and the specialist did not have access to my bloods. I mentioned the B12 and he asked me to take supplements for 3 months and then return if the neuropathic symptoms don't subside but he felt my symptoms were solely due to low B12. Stupidly, I didn't ask him about the dose because I assumed the GP would either prescribe or let me know.

Lonecatwithkitten Tue 21-Jul-15 17:03:32

If a consultant feel you have a peripheral neuropathy due to low B12 you need injections not an over the counter product. Read the pernicious anaemia societies web site they give really good advice.
I would start stamping my feet with your GP.

Kayden Wed 29-Jul-15 10:00:32

I saw the loveliest GP today who told me that my vitamin B12 was 170 (lowest end of normal range is 190 at our lab apparently). She asked why on earth the other GP hadn't prescribed B12 injections. However, coupled with some other concerns, she is querying coeliac disease. So, I've been referred to a gastroenterologist.

Pleasemrstweedie Wed 29-Jul-15 11:51:56

Result! Very pleased to hear this. Hope they can now get you sorted out. “Slightly low” indeed!

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