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Posts Tagged ‘Symptoms of pernicious anemia’

Borderline Pernicious Anemia- What’s the Difference?

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

 

 

Severe vitamin B12 deficiency can take years to develop; if you’ve been diagnosed with borderline pernicious anemia, then there’s still time for you to prevent permanent nerve damage and boost healthy red blood cells…

Borderline Pernicious Anemia- What’s the Difference? B12 Patch

B12 deficiency is pernicious and sinister

According to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 3.2% of middle-aged individuals have dangerously low levels of vitamin B12, resulting in symptoms such as constant fatigue, memory loss, depression, and painful numbness and tingling in the extremities.

Additionally, a whopping 20% of people from the same age group have borderline pernicious anemia, meaning that their vitamin B12 levels are steadily plummeting, although none of the characteristic symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency have manifested themselves…yet.

Untreated, borderline pernicious anemia, or subclinical vitamin B12 deficiency, can quickly escalate into full-blown clinical pernicious anemia, causing more than just a few debilitating symptoms.

Long-term pernicious anemia can lead to irreversible nerve damage, blood diseases, an increased risk for heart attack or stroke, and in worst-case scenarios, death.

Risk factors

Pernicious anemia is not exactly a disease, but rather a condition that can occur as a result of an underlying illness or other risk factors.

Risk factors for pernicious anemia or any other forms of vitamin B12 deficiency include:

  • Gastrointestinal disease (Crohn’s disease, gastritis, stomach ulcers)
  • Family history for pernicious anemia
  • Family history for autoimmune disorders
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Migraines
  • Gastric bypass surgery
  • Removal of ilium
  • Alcoholism
  • Old age
  • Strict vegan dieting

For more, read Seven Stages of Vitamin B12 Deficiency

What are the symptoms of borderline pernicious anemia?

Unfortunately, there are rarely any apparent symptoms when vitamin B12 deficiency is still at the subclinical stage.

Sometimes, a blood test can confirm if vitamin B12 levels are noticeably low, but not always. Most vitamin B12 blood screenings test for total vitamin B12 molecules in your entire body, without distinguishing between “active B12” and dormant B12 which sits in your liver.

If you fall into any of the risk factors for even borderline pernicious anemia, then you should supplement with extra vitamin B12, even if you haven’t noticed any of the telltale symptoms, in order to prevent depletion.

Your turn!

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

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Like this? Read more:

6 Degrees of Vitamin B12- B12 Deficiency and Autoimmune Disease

Pernicious Anemia and B12 Deficiency- Historically Fatal, Still Formidable

Sources:

Vitamin B12 deficiency can be sneaky, harmful

Natural History and Prevalence of Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Why Vitamin B12 Deficiency should be on your Radar Screen

Image courtesy of Thirteen Of Clubs/flickr

The Addison’s Disease-Vitamin B12 Deficiency Link

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012

 

 

What is Addison’s disease, and why is pernicious anemia from vitamin B12 deficiency sometimes labeled Addison’s anemia? Here are some facts about B12 deficiency and Addison’s.

THE ADDISON’S DISEASE-VITAMIN B12 DEFICIENCY LINK

What is Addison’s disease?

Addison’s disease is a rare illness that destroys the adrenal glands. Since symptoms of Addison’s don’t manifest themselves until the adrenal cortex is nearly obliterated- by 90%- Addison’s disease is difficult to catch in time to prevent damage.

What are the symptoms of Addison’s disease?

Symptoms of advanced-stage Addison’s disease include:

  • Constant fatigue
  • Muscle pain
  • Muscle weakness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Salt cravings
  • Low blood pressure
  • Skin discolorations

THE ADDISON’S DISEASE-VITAMIN B12 DEFICIENCY LINK

What causes Addison’s disease?

Addison’s from autoimmune disorder is the most common type, but other rare forms of Addison’s disease occur around the world.

Causes of Addison’s disease include:

  • Autoimmune disorder
  • Fungal infection
  • Adrenal hemorrhage
  • Treatment for Cushing’s disease
  • Some hereditary diseases
  • Secondary Addison’s disease from pituitary gland tumor

Is Vitamin B12 Deficiency an Autoimmune Disorder? Yup.

Vitamin B12 deficiency and Addison’s

Most cases of Addison’s disease result from autoimmune disorder, and approximately half eventually develop other autoimmune diseases such as thyroid malfunctions.

Often, vitamin B12 deficiency also results from an autoimmune disorder- pernicious anemia, which occurs when the stomach is unable to produce or maintain the intrinsic factor enzyme that is necessary for vitamin B12 absorption.

About 5% of patients with autoimmune Addison’s disease may also develop vitamin B12 deficiency-pernicious anemia.

Because of the strong link between vitamin B12 deficiency and Addison’s disease, pernicious anemia is sometimes referred to as Addison’s anemia.

Other conditions that correlate with Addison’s include:

  • Vitiligo (white patches on skin)
  • Celiac disease- gluten sensitivity disorder
  • Hair loss
  • Muscle loss
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Sjogren’s syndrome
  • ITP (idiopathic thrombocytopenia purpura)- low blood platelets

THE ADDISON’S DISEASE-VITAMIN B12 DEFICIENCY LINK

Symptoms of pernicious anemia

Blood tests for vitamin B12 deficiency and intrinsic factor antibodies can determine if you have pernicious anemia.

Symptoms of pernicious anemia include:

  • Constant fatigue
  • Muscle pain
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Hallucinations
  • Irritability
  • Paranoia
  • Forgetfulness
  • Mental confusion (brain fog)
  • Painful tingling and numbness in hands and feet
  • Muscle twitches
  • Electric shock sensations
  • Difficulty walking
  • Poor motor control
  • Heart palpitations
  • Breathlessness
  • Altered sense of taste
  • Sore red tongue
  • Burning mouth syndrome

Pernicious Anemia and B12 Deficiency- Historically Fatal, Still Formidable

Pernicious anemia treatment

To replenish vitamin B12 in your blood, a regimen of vitamin B12 injections, are necessary, per doctor’s instructions.

Please tell us…

Have you been diagnosed with Addison’s disease and vitamin B12 deficiency?

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

Share with your friends!

If you found this article helpful, then please share with your friends, family, and coworkers by email, Facebook, or Google+.

Read more about vitamin B12 deficiency

8 Ailments Linked with Gastritis, including B12 Deficiency

Celiac and B12- Celiac Disease and Vitamin B12 Deficiency

6 Degrees of Vitamin B12- B12 Deficiency and Autoimmune Disease

References:

Living with Addison’s Disease

Images:

SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY, FRANK AND HELENA/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY, Ambro

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