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tiffany1496--The way to tell that you are anemic is when the HGB and HCT are below range on lab results. Those two numbers are the indicators used by the doctors and Ferritin is the storage of iron in your body. Be sure to get copies of your labs and start a file.

Your periods will effect the test results, with supplements you might be able to stay at the same numbers and not drop. Without the supplements is usually when you start to drop blood counts. The Ferritin can take up to a year to fill up completely. But you have responded ~already~ quite well. That is a real good sign. IV iron is "usually" reserved for when a patient doesn't fill these stores on their own, or they do not absorb well. With numbers such as yours you should be able to correct the anemia fairly soon (as in a couple of months) if on a good dose of iron and eating iron rich foods.

The blood occult test only shows bleeding at the time of the test. I would want to have a colonoscopy and endoscopy to check for internal bleeding. It's just to be on the safe side, maybe not necessary. This is something that is routine when you have a low Ferritin and are anemic even if you have heavy periods. You are going to feel bad for a long time but it does get better.

As far as the supplements go, they hurt some of us like heck! My GI doc put me on one for GI upset, poly iron 150 2X daily which gives me 300 mgs of elemental iron per day. I can even take it on an empty stomach, it's great for me. This is a script but you can also ask for it OTC at the pharmacy and they will show you the generic type. Call your doctor and see what they can prescribe for you. You just have to keep trying until you find one that is right for you.

As for Ferritin anything under the charts value is extremely low. The Hematologist reserves the IV for severe cases. Some will give this based on Ferritin only but that is usually if they are not absorbing well. When I had issues the Hematologist just said to take less. Well, that made my blood drop again. I wouldn't take less or with food because this decreases your progress by far. You have to find something that you CAN handle that WILL give you the right amount. Feel better soon! FLFLOWERGIRL:)

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