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I am having recurring problems with anemia and am looking for answers. My problem surfaced about 3 or 4 years ago. I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia about 7 years ago and see a rheumatologist regularly for blood work. My hemoglobin levels became very low (around 10). I was told to take Slow Fe supplements but they did not help. My diet is good and not iron deficient. I was sent to a hematologist who gave me an IV iron treatment. About a year later my iron was depleted again, and I was given another IV iron treatment. This has continued but now I am receiving two IV iron treatments per year (I am at a hemoglobin of 11.7 now and the doc is waiting on ferritin results to determine if I go in for a treatment in the next few weeks -- it was in the high 12's in December). Last year at this time, my hemoglobin dropped to 6 and the hematologist wanted me to get a blood transfusion but I was afraid of that so she gave me another IV treatment (I was told that my ferritin measured zero at this time!). If you are wondering how I could function, I normally suffer from a lot of fatigue due to the fibromyalgia. The anemia comes on so gradually, I really don't recognize how bad it is until I get better. I do get a bad case of pica (crave ice) when the level drops extremely low and that has been my only major sign.

Through all of this, no doctor has tried to find out why, and it was just written off as due to a heavy menstrual cycle. My cycle is heavy but not abnormally so and not any heavier than it has been my entire life and I previously had no problems with absorbing and retaining iron. It was only through my insistence that my doctors checked for possible causes. I am on Nexium for GERD due to a hiatal hernia and have been for about 8 years and on Prevacid for several years prior to that. My gastroenterologist did a colonoscopy and endoscopy last year to check for internal bleeding, erosion of stomach lining, esophageal problems and also checked for Celiac Disease. Everything came out fine. I asked the hematologist to check for B-12 deficiency -- she did and it was fine also. I am very suspicious of proton-pump inhibitor (Nexium) being the problem, but the gastroenterologist said it would not result in such severe anemia. Next month I am having the Mirena IUD put in that should lessen or eliminate my periods so I will see if they are really the problem. What are feelings about a link between proton-pump inhibitors and anemia? Any other ideas. The only other thing consistently low on my CBC's is white blood cell count, but usually it is normal but on the low side of normal.

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