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Anemia Message Board


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I've been feeling sick for some time now, and it gets much worse daily. I have a few things going on, but nothing the doctors have been able to nail down completely just yet. The level of fatigue, weakness, etc. has gotten to the point where I'm basically house-bound, and now I can hardly stand up to put a small load of laundry in the wash...and that's the tip of the iceberg.

I've had tons of blood work showing several things out of range including, but not limited to, ferritin. I will post the levels below, but of the 3 doctors I've seen (2 rheumatologists, 1 GI Dr., and my GP), all have said "anemia" but none have tested for iron itself. My last blood work for ferritin was July 7 (2015 of course) and I don't know where I stand with this..still.

EGD and Colonoscopy (to check for bleeding) came back just fine. I have to wait for a follow up after the GI Dr gets the pathology results back (he did several biopsies, including one polyp in the colon).

So, basically... I'm assuming I have iron insufficiency and not yet anemic. I would be SO grateful if someone could help me and let me know if I should be requesting more information, tests, etc., because the symptoms are so severe that I cry... I'm so exhausted. BTW, I had a sleep study done the other night and none of this fatigue, etc. is from sleep apnea.

I have a few things going on that the doctors, at least right now, have not said are the cause of the depleted ferritin levels. And I do realize a few of the things going on with me 'can' make someone tired, but the fatigue I have is out of the ball park, so I can only assume it's the low ferritin?

I apologize in advance if the below is TMI for the scope of this discussion, but my doctors don't know WHY my ferritin is depleted so figured I would put everything here, including cardiac findings in my latest echo, to rule out what all these horrid symptoms are caused by. I also hope that maybe someone here can tell if any of the below (cardiac excluded) could be the cause of the depleted ferritin (that my GI Dr keeps calling "Anemia").

Liver GI:
NASH (non-alcoholic steatohepatitis)

Vitamin D insufficiency - 23.9 Normal range: 30.0 - 100
Ferritin: 7.4 Normal range: 11.0 - 306.8

Heart
MVP with mild-moderate regurgitation - (has been going on a while and getting worse.
Mitral valve - thickening (new this year)
Aortic regurgitation - moderate (new last year)
Aortic valve -mildly calcified (new this year)
Right and left Atrium - mildly dilated (new this year)
Tricuspid valve regurgitation - trace (new this year)
Pulmonary valve - trivial pulmonic regurgitation (new this year)
Grade II Diastolic Dysfunction (unknown if this is at Diastolic Heart Failure yet. Just received the above results last Saturday. I'm assuming it's not DHF.)

dRVVT - 46.0 Normal <45

I'm on Eliquis as well due to a TIA in 2013 and atrial fibrillation. The AFib, SVT, and atrial flutter I had dealt with I had ablations for (about one year ago). I only mention this to let you guys know I no longer have those arrhythmias, but that I'm still on a blood thinner...which I'm told does not cause any issues with ferritin, iron, etc.

I was told my one rheumy that I "probably" have fibromyalgia, but my gut says otherwise. He was also dismissive of everything and spent about 5 minutes with me. No exaggeration. This is why I went to another rheumatologist elsewhere who thinks I don't have any time of autoimmune issues.

I'm at a loss. Most days it's too hard to even hold up my phone to text, brush my teeth without my muscles aching, and even typing this post has taken a lot out of me. At my wits end here because my doctors haven't been able to get to the bottom of things yet.

Symptoms (if it helps at all):

Extreme fatigue and weakness
VERY cold hands and feet (thyroid levels are normal, btw)
Nausea
Headaches
Intense salt cravings, which is new (adrenals are fine). I don't usually give in to this due to heart issues.
Right upper quadrant pain
Joint pain that sometimes wakes me up at night out of the blue (very intense)
Osteoarthritis type arthritis that seemed to come on over a period of a few months, making it so it's difficult to open and close my hands.
Muscle pain
Severe edema at times (even on low salt days)
Severe hair loss (was coming out by handfuls and it VERY thin now)
Dry skin
Sleep a LOT, while sometimes I have insomnia. I can't stay awake watching television, reading, riding in a car for anything more than a 1 hr car ride.
Brain fog, can't concentrate.
Moody
Depressed/feeling 'low' for the last few days... feels very weird, whatever this is.

I don't have periods anymore, not for about 8 months now. Blood work early last year showed my hormone levels at the low end of "post-menopausal" range.

I'm just completely exhausted, weak, aching, foggy, and sick. And I have no idea what to do next, what to ask for test-wise (if anything).

Any advice or insight would be GREATLY appreciated.





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