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In a way, yes, that's why I suggested looking at thyroid for another reason for your fatigue. I would differ with your Dr on stopping the iron when your Hb reaches 12. It takes at least 3 months to restore iron stores beyond the anemia being corrected, and if you have an absorption issue, it will take even longer. I would go more by ferritin, and because of your surgery, you may need to be on iron indefinitely. Vit C helps absorption of iron, so taking 500mg along with the iron can help. Iron deficiency causes small red cell size, reflected by low MCV. B12 and folate deficiency cause large cell size (high MCV). It is possible though, that you are deficient in other vitamins, and a folate, B12 and Vit D level may be helpful. I would also ask for your thyroid results on paper, as some Drs. let slide hypothyroidism that could be present making you so tired. I always like to see my results, not just accept their verbal "normal", as borderline numbers can be meaningful. If thyroid truly is normal, you might have serum cortisol levels checked to rule out Addison's.
Sorry it has been a while since I responded. I really appreciate all the suggestions and advice.

My mono (ebv) test showed a past infection, but no current one. They had to redraw it, because the first time it didn't get run... So I had them run a ferritin, also. It was 12. The nurse said he wanted me to continue my iron.

I am a little confused. While I didn't get his full opinion about that specific ferritin level, my friend, who is a doctor, says she thinks I need to see a hematologist and get iron infusions. However, besides reading what you guys say here about ferritin levels, the rest of the internet (medical sites), seems to point to my level as normal or barely low. I don't know if I can actually do iron infusions, due to finances and a very full schedule, but I kind of feel like I will get laughed out of a hematologist's office. The last one I saw, when I had a hgb of 8.8 and a ferritin of 4, really brushed me off. When I had a follow up and my hgb was 11, he "guessed" that my ferritin was a 30, and should be fine. They wouldn't even redraw it!! But, if I do go to one, I will be seeing someone else.

I haven't thought about or researched lupus at all... So I will do so, and see what my doctor thinks. Especially since we have no real clear cut reason as why I tend towards anemia. (By the way, my D levels have been a 14, I have had to heavily supplement to get that up--- over a year or more, actually.) I did have a gastric sleeve surgery, which we have suspected could cause absorption issues, but iron supplementation seems to help my hgb, especially, so I don't know if that is the true issue.
I understand that there is differing info online about ferritin levels. The fact is that

1. "ranges" that labs use are based on past tests, and guess what? Those people are usually not healthy! So they really aren't a proper demonstration of healthy levels!Studies have shown that iron deficiency is prevelant around the world, so even healthy people getting check could be low.

2. Within range is a lot different than "optimal"

3. Doctors a very limited in nutrition training. They react to medical problems and aren't in the business of keeping your health optimal. Most are not well versed in deficiencies, which is why they mistakenly check you iron rather than your ferritin. So if they don't know what test to order, why would you trust their opinion on the condition they are testing you for?

My hematologist has said that anything below 30 can cause fatigue.
12 is low. too low...and its showing up in your blood counts. It sounds to me like you have symptoms of anemia. I read a study that concluded that of those with ferritin under 20, at least half had 0 ferritin found in there bone marrow on biopsy.

Keep up the iron and hope you find some answers and get better!





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