Low Ferritin Anemia

Scents Of Peace
on Dec 22, 2006 @ 03:16 am

I've been having an issue with low ferritin levels for the past year and was wondering if anyone else is having this problem. My hemaglobin is borderline, but my body's reserve of iron (found in the bone marrow) is in the gutter. My level was 18, then 8 before I had IV iron treatments all summer. My level would go up to 70ish and then back to 18 in a few weeks. My doc would like it to be around the 100 range. My hematologist is puzzled, my gastro says I'm fine and my gyno is clueless. Generally, you lose ferritin GRADUALLY, like a slow leak. I've been checked one end to the next and at this point they think it may be an absorption issue, not a leak. Any feedback ?

9 Replies

Severe anemia linked to low iron and ferritin (???) on May 17, 2009 @ 05:50 am

I think I have a very similar problem.

anemia on May 17, 2009 @ 12:29 pm

Are you taking daily ferrous sulfate tablets? Ferrous sulfate is absorbed better than ferrous fumarate.You may also want to try taking a multivitamin WITH MINERALS together with ferrous sulfate

anemia on May 17, 2009 @ 02:38 pm

I'm taking daily ferrous sulphate.

The doctor (quack) I had previous to my present (saviour ?) diagnosed me as anemic twice over the last few yrs, but didn't treat me properly...basically he just said, here - take this iron.

Now my anemia is so severe that I just had to have 2 blood transfusions (which hasn't seemed to help) and tests showing low/small levels of "ferritin" indicate a more serious underlying problem.

common problem in women on May 17, 2009 @ 11:31 pm

Anemia or low ferritin levels are common in women because we lose blood every month during our menstrual cycle. My ferritin level was around 30-40 when I had my last physical. My doctor prescribed me ferrous fumarate and told me to take it for a few months. She said she'll do a blood test again in a few months but when I went back to her later, she said it's not necessary. She also told me that I don't have to take it anymore if I don't want to. I wondered how she can make that call without testing my blood again, but whatever...I was tired of taking it anyway, so I stopped. I never did get a blood test to find out whether my iron supplement did any good.

Sickie, is your doctor sending you to see a specialist?

Scents, aren't there tests your hematologist can do to find out if it's absorption issue?

Rx for anemia: Cow's blood! on Jul 14, 2009 @ 10:50 pm

I have been diagnosed with anemia. The doc found out after a
miscarriage (in Nov '08) and my hemoglobin levels were at 76 (normal
range here in Canada is 120 - 150 for females) and my ferritin levels
were at 9 (again, normal range here is 18–160 ng/ml). I have been
extremely tired and my family comments on how pale I always am. I
frequently get colds and have a heck of a time getting rid of them!

My doc has advised me to take Proferrin, which is a heme iron
polypeptide. It has 11mg per tablet and (as dr says) is 'cow's blood'
which is more easily absorbed by our body and is more gentle on the
stomach than regular ferrous gluconate/sulfate (no constipation). I
take 2 tabs a day, plus a multivite with 28mg of iron, so try to build
up my 'stores' of iron. I go for my lab results July 16th so hopefully
the numbers are rising.

anemia on Jul 15, 2009 @ 02:14 am

My father is having a problem with anemia for the first time in his life,he is in the icu cause he was hit by a car one month ago.He has had several transfusions because of low hemoglobin.They can't find any internal bleeding though.He also had a problem with the kidneys from the trauma.It's a common occurance as I found out.Kidney function is slowly comming back.I found out that the kidneys are responsible for our
Erythropoietin, which helps to produce red blood cells. So if you have bad kidney function,are on dialysis or whatnot ,that is also a cause.Bleeding ulcers,bleeding hemmoroids also.

... on Jul 15, 2009 @ 06:43 pm

I don't understand why doctors would prescribe the "regular ferrous'
pills instead of the Proferrin (which I just read up on) if it has has
much less side effects. I am going to ask my doctor tomorrow. I don't
have anemia (YET) but my reserves are low...at 8...so the doc
prescribed me the regular ferrous pills which I haven't taken yet
because I know they are harsh on the stomach and I already have stomach
issues. Thanks for the info.

Agaphmou (nice greek name) Perastika to your father...I'll say a prayer for him :-)

absorption issues on Jul 23, 2009 @ 02:45 pm

I've had anemia since I was a kid but it comes in waves and is not a
constant feeling of being tired for me. I too, have always had doctors
tell me to take iron pills but they are just too hard on my stomach.
When I swtiched to my current doctor, I went in during a really bad
bout of anemia and the tests showed pretty much no iron/ferritin at
all. The first thing he asked me was how much milk I drank. i thought
it was an odd question but I told him a few glasses a day, with cereal,
in tea etc. I have always been a big milk drinker. When I was a kid
I'd drink a litre a day sometimes because I would feel 'hungry' and it
felt like it filled me up but the 'hungry' feeling always came back so
I'd just have another glass or two of milk. It turns out that milk
impedes on your body's ability to absorb iron. Citric acid helps
promote the absorption and you can get iron pills with citric acid in
them for a gentler process.

I cut milk out of my diet for a few weeks and felt the difference so I
only have milk in my tea and the occassional bowl of cereal. It hasn't
got rid of the problem (my doctor's office called me in over my lastest
blood test results) and I still have days or even up to a week where I
feel like my limbs are lead and I can barely move, or focus but now
that I know about the effects of moo juice, I feel like I have a bit more control of the situation.

freckles is right on Jul 24, 2009 @ 02:04 am

Taking iron pills with calcium is a definitely no-no. Calcium inhibits the absorption of iron. Some nutritionists/dietitians argue that if you are going to take them together, you might as well not take the iron pill at all.

The best advice that I can give (having low iron on/off throughout my teen years) is to try to consume foods high in iron with Vitamin C. If you can down your Proferrin with a little OJ, do it! Or, your steak with some orange or applie juice. You can sprinkle sunflower seeds (high in iron) on your salad and top it off with a citrus dressing. The Vit C will help your body absorb the iron better. Stay away from dairy when taking iron.

Another food really high in iron is pork liver. Not exactly my fav though....


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