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Does anyone else have only low iron saturation (aka low transferrin saturation)?

It is the only value I have out of range. Mine is 11% (range 15-50%).

My serum iron is 43 (range 28 - 170).
TIBC (transferrin) is in the high end of normal (a year ago it was above normal.)
Ferritin is in the low end of normal.

So everything seems to fit the classic iron deficiency pattern, but not quite out of range, except for the iron saturation being too low.

My doc said I was definitely anemic (not based on lung pain, weakness, or excess bleeding complaints, just based on blood work findings.)

I was supposed to take 3 iron sulfate pills/day (325 mg each) starting a year ago, after the doctor found low iron saturation and low B-12; plus started B-12 shots every 2 weeks, then monthly, plus 5,000 mcg/day sublingual B-12. Now I'm too high on B-12 (it's at 1500 now, normal is to 900) so we're stopping the shots.

I tapered off the iron pills quickly because of constipation, then taking ~1/week until 6 months ago. But now the doc says I need to at least take 2/day, for a long time, to build up bone marrow iron stores.

Researching anemia symptoms on the web, and from helpful info on this board (thanks to all of you!!), symptoms that fit the anemia pattern that I have:

- exhaustion
- not feeling like walking or biking (I don't drive)
- falling off of my bike b/c too weak to balance it
- having to get off of my bike and walk it, after just riding a block (walk a block, ride a block)
- falling when walking, a few times in last couple of years
- exercise isn't rebuilding my strength
- lung pain for months, especially w/exertion
- shortness of breath w/exertion
- starting to walk to the bus, taking twice as long, because of lung pain and breathlessness, and missing the bus, many times
- lots of sleeping (by day, but awake all night - anyone else have that, pls?)
- repeated lung infections that would not go away (in bed for a month w/a chest cold, TWICE this semester)
- inability to concentrate AT ALL on reading and writing for school, especially technical stuff. Felt like a complete idiot this semester. Dept. chair also thought it was bizarre I couldn't get through his reading (2 draft chapters of his law book.)
- craving for a non-food (pica?): eating small bits of rubber! (Just a teensy amount a few times. I've stopped.)
- increased irritability
- snapping at people/losing it daily
- insomnia
- restless leg syndrome
- becoming a TV zombie (someone else on this board said she had this due to exhaustion and inability to concentrate on anything, just collapsing into a chair and vegetating infront of the TV: same here!)
- aches and pains increasing for years
- heavy menstrual bleeding almost daily for almost 2 years (I'm in mid-40s)

The worst are: being awake all night, sleeping during the day, exhaustion!!!!!!!, even with 8 hrs' sleep, and not being able to do school reading and writing, practically at all: can't concentrate, can't remember the sentence I just read. Confusion.

Does anyone else just have low iron saturation, please?
If so, would you tell me your symptoms?


P.S. Anyone want a TV?
I read this same thing about the transferrin being high with iron deficiency.

These are what my labs look like as of June 18

Total iron 36 (40-175) Low (dropped from 51 in April)
TIBC 389 (250-450) Normal (427 in April)
Transferrin Saturation 9 (15-50) Low (dropped from 12 in April)
RBC 4.36 (3.80-5.10) Normal (About the same as in April)
Hemoglobin 11.7 (11.7-15.5) Normal (Was 11.6 in April)
Hematocrit 35.2 (35-45) Normal (Was 34.5 in April)
RDW 18.1 (11.0-15.0) High (Was 17.1 in April)
Ferritin 10 (10-154) "Normal" (Was 5 in April)

I thought Transferrin Saturation was supposed to be high with iron deficiency, but my doctor says that this is what I have.

Also...Why does RDW keep getting higher?

I'm going to try liquid iron because I don't tolerate iron pills well at all (They actually give me diarrhea).

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