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low ferritin, high iron?
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low ferritin, high iron?

25 female, 103lbs, 5'4.

For the past 7 months following a sudden bout of what was likely gastritis, I developed chronic symtoms (symptoms). Pain in my abdomen, specifically in the upper and upper right side (aka stomach and liver area), extreme bloating after eating, nauseua, fatigue/malaise, loss of sex drive. Also my tongue will turn bright orange sometimes, and often there is a "raw dough" taste in my month, it feels like my stomach and esophagus are full and bloating.I've been getting rashes all over my ribcage, abdomen, and back, sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night sweating, shaking, feeling nauseous and almost hungover, my heart pounding. I have not been able to associate the rashes to any possible allergy (no common food/enviroment).

Gastroscopy ruled out H.pyori, celiac and ulcers, only mild chronic gastritis was found. Gastric emptying test was normal, as was a colonoscopy. I'm now in the process of completing a battery of hydrogen breath tests for lactose, fructose, glucose, sorbitol and lactulose intolerance, and a screening for parasites (my symptoms started after a 4month trip to rural South America (I had gotten all the necessary vaccines before leaving) with low grade fever, vomiting, fatigue/malaise/muscle pain, bloating and vomiting after ingesting alcohol or oily foods. I had spent time living with locals, eating ceviche and raw vegetables, and took a trip to the Amazon. After a couple months I was fine, then suddenly one year later, I get sick again.

Also interesting is that my normal blood pressure is 90/60. In fact, in january it was 90/54. In march it spiked to 115/80, and it was 115/78 again when i checked in May.

I had a blood test on Monday. Everything was normal except the following:
Mean Cell Hemoglobin - 33 HIGH  (normal: 27-31)
Ferritin - 10.9 LOW (normal: 11.0-306.0)
Iron Level - 46.5 HIGH (normal: 11-29)
UIBC - 33 NORMAL (normal 26-52)
Iron Binding Capacity - 79.5 HIGH (normal 43.8-67.0)
Iron Saturation - 0.58 HIGH (normal 0.21-0.42)
Albumin - 38 NORMAL (normal 38-50)

Everything else was within normal ranges except the above which was either borderline or in the case if iron, way high.

I should mention I cook vegan (no meat, no dairy, no eggs) at home, and only eat meat (red meat or fish) when I eat out (which is pretty often). So I don't eat a lot of meat, but when I do it's usually red meat or sometimes fish. I do eat tofu and legumes a lot. I do not take supplements.

What does all this mean??? Does this suggest a liver problem or infection???

I am having surgery for endometriosis and removal of an ovarian cyst next week, and I am very concerned that high iron could increase my potentiel for infection and/or increase the virulence of an infection.
3 Comments Post a Comment
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2827584_tn?1340583296
They may want to consider a liver biopsy during that procedure. It adds very little as it is simply done with a needle.
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1927233_tn?1326673987
Thank you for the response, I will ask my surgeon.

So it is likely a liver problem? What sort of liver problem do you think?

Is there anything I can do to reduce my iron levels in the meantime, besides not eating iron-rich food???
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2827584_tn?1340583296
A liver biopsy adds vey little to the procedure and would rule out things like hemochromatosis as a possible explanation.
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