The level of ferritin, which also can be described as iron storage or a reservoir, reveals more about the body than the hemoglobin level, because nature sets the priority on the keeping hemoglobin level up as this is a life sustaining process. When this reservoir is depleted, all other 179 functions in the system that require iron have less priority and are already operating below optimum by the time that the hemoglobin value goes down. As a result, even with a normal hemoglobin level, a person can suffer from excessively low iron. A final indication would be to look at the red blood cells under a microscope. Often these will be deformed, small and discolored due to insufficient iron in the system. Such red blood cells are not capable of performing their main function of transporting oxygen throughout the body!
A few of the possible symptoms are:
"step" fatigue (the kind where you feel like you can't put one foot in front of the other), extreme cold or hot, rapid heart rate (heart palpitations), fogginess/mental confusion, muscle weakness, very sore joints, broken thought processing, loss of hair...
For 5 years I have gone to doctors trying to figure out why I felt like I do. I lost my eyebrows and went to my dermatologist. She ordered a Ferritin test and wa-la, there was the culprit. It was 12. I went on Feosal, 2 a day. for nearly 9 months. It went up to 38. I had injections in my eyebrows & with the pure iron, they are back, thin, but back. My last Ferritin test it had gone back down to 20 and still on the iron. So, I'm having the endo & colon tests run. I guess my question is what do I do if they don't find a problem with these tests?
Check with a hematologist. Thalassemia patients have special treatments for iron. My doc thinks I have it, too (I'm going in for more tests in a couple of weeks). Regular iron pills do nothing for me. I don't know what feosal, is. I was put on some presecription iron once, and it didn't work either.
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