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Hi all,

I have been so grateful for the wealth of information on this board and particularly on this topic. My heart goes out to all of us who are struggling w/ the effects of anemia(zzzzzzzzzzzz and more).

I wanted to get some insight on my lab results and whether I am on the right track - when my new lab results come back, I will insist my doc take this seriously.

Briefly, a bit of history... I am 45 yr old female w/ three kids. I had gastric bypass surgery almost 4 yrs ago and lost about 70 lbs and then got pg w/ my last child. During that pregnancy, I craved ice like crazy. I ate it by the lb...literally. My iron levels looked normal but now I understand that my iron stores made my levels seem ok.

One of the risks of having the bypass surgery is that the body isn't able to digest/process vitamins and specifically, B-12 due to lack of stomach acid.
I have struggled w/ depression for years and started taking cymbalta a little over a year ago and felt a big difference, at first. For the past six months, I have lapsed back into apathy (apathetic about being apathetic, kwim?) and couldn't muster ANY excitement for Xmas...even tho' it is my favorite holiday.

I had blood work done last Oct. and my doc started me on an iron supplement called Tandem. I had been taking otc variations of iron trying to find something that worked. I have NO energy...haven't for the longest time, have thinning hair on top of my head, cold hands/feet, anxiety/depression, and lately really sore muscles in my shoulders and thighs (getting out of a chair and trying to walk is painful...almost like flu symptoms) and occassional dizziness/vertigo. :dizzy:
I had my thyroid removed about 5 yrs ago and take synthroid (always take it separate from iron supp.)

Ok....after rambling...my Oct. labs were
HGB - 9.1 and the lab normal was 11.5-15.5 looooowwwwww....
HCT - 28.9 and labs normal is 34.0 - 45.0
MCV - 71 and lab normal is 80-100
MCH - 22.6 and normal is 26.0 - 34.0 (not sure what MCV and MCH measure, any input?)
Ferritin was 7.1 ng/ml and lab range is 3.0-244.0 and the nurse insisted today that my # is perfectly normal (am I wrong in disagreeing??) Even if it falls in their 'normal' range...it seems so low considering the symptoms I am having.

I am hoping the experts here can shed some light on where things stand. I had to remind them, today, to test my B levels and they told me my insurance won't pay for retesting of my ferritin levels (how often then?). As with others on this board, there are many people who have had gastric bypass who end up needing IV iron infusions....I am ready to beg for this...as I am at a point where I can hardly function due to fatigue/lack of energy.

I am open to any and all insight and suggestions/analysis....from those who have btdt :)

Thank you!
Tana





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