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Posts Tagged ‘Illnesses Mimic B12 Deficiency’

Top 10 Disorders Linked with B12 Deficiency

Wednesday, December 4th, 2013



Vitamin B12 deficiency is a type of anemia that sneaks up on you; symptoms are often masked by other underlying illnesses, and can worsen intense fatigue, depression, anxiety and weakness. Listed below are illnesses and other health conditions that can be helped by diagnosing vitamin B12 deficiency and implementing immediate supplementation.

Top 10 Disorders Linked with B12 Deficiency

  1. Anemia- Pernicious anemia occurs with untreated vitamin B12 deficiency. Once considered a fatal disease, doctors can now prevent irreparable nerve damage, cognitive disorders, and loss of red blood cells by executing high doses of vitamin B12, usually for life.
  2. Alzheimer’s disease dementia- Vitamin B12 deficiency is common among elderly citizens. As you age, you lose your ability to digest vitamins from natural food sources. One of the earliest symptoms of declining vitamin B12 levels is memory loss. With age-related dementia, undiagnosed vitamin B12 deficiency can exacerbate symptoms like forgetfulness, confusion, moodiness, and paranoia.  That’s why doctors recommend routine serum vitamin B12 screenings for individuals over the age of 60.
  3. Mental illness- Scientists have found that people with bipolar disorder, chronic depression, or post-partum psychosis respond better to medications when vitamin B12 levels are normal. Conversely, vitamin B12 deficiency in people suffering from mental illness (depression, schizophrenia) results in a worsening of symptoms.
  4. Peripheral neuropathy- Vitamin B12 is essential for maintaining a healthy nervous system, as it supports myelin, a fatty coating that insulates your nerve cells. Long-term vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to severe nerve damage. Symptoms include painful tingling and numbness in the hands and feet, muscle spasms, and poor reflexes.
  5. Multiple sclerosis- B12 deficiency is sometimes misdiagnosed as MS, as the symptoms are similar and both conditions involve a breakdown of myelin. Vitamin B12 deficiency in multiple sclerosis patients can also magnify symptoms of numbness, muscle pain, and fatigue.
  6. Vertigo- Dizziness and vertigo is one of many side effects of vitamin B12 deficiency.
  7. Chronic fatigue syndrome- Severe fatigue can be helped by correcting a vitamin B12 deficiency, as B12 is needed for energy and mental wellness. Also, many chronic fatigue syndrome sufferers also have gastrointestinal disorders that prevent proper absorption of vitamin B12 from foods, leading to lower than normal B12 levels.
  8. Fibromyalgia- Similar to CFS, fibromyalgia is also comorbid with severe vitamin B12 deficiency.
  9. Erectile dysfunction- Many oft-cited scientific reports have seen a link between sexual disorders and abnormally low levels of vitamin B12.
  10. Infertility- Vitamin B12 deficiency during pregnancy or while trying to conceive can increase your risk for premature birth, miscarriage, and difficulty conceiving.

If you have any of the illnesses listed above, have you been tested for vitamin B12 deficiency? Sometimes, false-negative test results fail to determine vitamin B12 deficiency when symptoms are evident.

Since vitamin B12 is safe to use in even highest doses, doctors recommend supplementing if any of the signs of vitamin B12 deficiency make it difficult to function normally, even without a diagnosis.

Also read

Vitamin B12 Deficiency and Menopause Symptoms

Vitamin B12- a Penny a Day Keeps Dementia Away

Shocking Must-See Video on Vitamin B12 Deficiency Crisis

Image courtesy of piyaphantawong

Neurosarcoidosis Masquerading as Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Monday, January 28th, 2013



Fatigue, memory loss, and chronic pain- these symptoms could signify vitamin B12 deficiency, or they could indicate a separate underlying condition that requires treatment beyond vitamin B12 supplementation. Neurosarcoidosis is one such illness that produces symptoms strikingly similar severe nerve damage from vitamin B12 deficiency.

Neurosarcoidosis Masquerading as Vitamin B12 Deficiency- B12 Patch

Cover your bases

You’ve been taking your vitamin B12 supplements religiously, going beyond what the doctors recommend, and still, you feel constantly tired, disoriented, and physically out-of-whack. Do you need even more B12, or is there another explanation for persistent symptoms?

…Perhaps it’s time to discuss with your doctor about other illnesses that sometimes mimic the vitamin B12 deficiency.

Here’s another scenario- Say you’ve been diagnosed with depression, lupus, or neurosarcoidosis, and after months of treatment you still haven’t seen a significant reversal of symptoms. Is it possible that you’re doctor’s missing something?

…Could the solution be as simple as setting yourself up with regulated weekly doses of vitamin B12?

In either case, you may need to be your own health advocate, as many doctors misdiagnose or fail to recognize conditions that are sometimes comorbid with or similar to vitamin B12 deficiency.


When sarcoidosis spreads inflammation to the brain and nervous system, neurosarcoidosis can produce symptoms of nerve damage very similar to those experienced by patients of pernicious anemia or other types of vitamin B12 deficiency.

The cause of sarcoidosis is unknown, but scientists speculate that it may result from an immune system dysfunction or genetic disorder.

Symptoms of neurosarcoidosis mimicking vitamin B12 deficiency include:

  • Confusion
  • Brain fog
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Memory loss
  • Dizziness
  • Vision problems
  • Altered sense of taste
  • Moodiness
  • Numbness in the arms and legs
  • Impaired ability to control arms and legs

Tests and treatment

To test, a lumbar puncture, MRI or nerve biopsy can confirm neurosarcoidosis.

There is no cure, but treatment for symptoms may involve corticosteroids, hormone replacement, antidepressants, or physical therapy.

Because of the correlation between this illness and immune system functioning, it’s highly advisable to supplement with vitamin B12, as the risk factor for developing vitamin B12 malabsorption increases with any autoimmune disorder.

Your turn!

Are you currently on a vitamin B12 regimen for neurosarcoidosis, or another form of sarcoidosis?

Do you have any questions or suggestions?  Please leave your comments below.

Share with your friends!

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Like this? Read more:

Top Ten Signs of a Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Is Vitamin B12 Deficiency a Real Illness?

Diagnosing Vitamin B12 Deficiency and Pernicious Anemia: Top 10 Tests



Image(s) courtesy of Victor Habbick/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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