hi, i am new to this site, and am finding it very helpful. i recently had blood test to check my levels, the results are ...vitamin b12= 322. serum folate=3.6. ferritin=20.6.could anyone tell me if these results are good or bad..... i have a gp who does,nt really listen, and i am at my wits end, at the moment, with a list of symtoms, that have been getting worse for some time. thanks for any help...

12 Replies

  • Hi mollydollydog2 ,

    Welcome here!

    It is very difficult top say anything about results with out including your labs ref ranges used for "normal", different labs use different ranges and different equipment etc.

    My lab uses as ref range for "normal":

    serum B12 161-531 ng/L = 119 - 392 pmol/ L, Serum folate 2.9 - 16.9 ug/L, ferritine: 22.00 - 332.00 ug/L. So looking at that it would seem to me your folate and ferritin are to low, but your lab may well use different ranges...

    Kind regards,


  • In what way have you been getting worse?

  • syptoms are.... tingerling in hands, feet and head. pains in legs, tiredness, dropping things, bumping into things, a feeling of being unbalanced when walking. very moody, and depressed. shakey and forgetful, i really feel as if i am falling apart.....thankyou for your reply...

  • Okay, and thanks for your reply.

    Well, you have to remember that there is no guarantee that any of your symptoms are linked to B12 deficiency. However they are indicative of it.

    Firstly, as Marre says the normal ranges of the tests differ so without the ranges we can't provide a clear yes or no. However, there are no clear yes or no answers anyway so we'll take it from there.

    It is highly unlikely that your B12 level will be coming under the normal range. Most have below normal as being under 220 at the maximum.

    However you being above the normal range means little or nothing. It has been made quite clear now to all concerned and from a variety of scientific sources that patients can be suffering neurological damage even when B12 levels are normal, even when they do not have anaemia, and even when they do not have antibodies.

    The first thing you need to do is download the PDF of the BMJ article. You will find it on this thread here:

    Go to the 2nd post down as the 1st link only leads you to the opening abstract.

    That article should have been read by your doctor. You read it and you will see that all the things I say above are true.

    The other points are that your folate appears to be low as could be your iron levels. A low iron level would also mask some of the damage being caused to your blood if you also have a b12 deficiency.

    DO NOT take a folate supplement before you get a b12 supplement. It will only make matters worse. However you can take an iron supplement and see if that improves things a little.

    When you've read it, if you've got any questions, just come back and ask.

    Otherwise take it in to your GP. Be aware, you may well not get anywhere. Try and get someone you trust to also read the article and get them to go with you to the doctors if necessary.

    Taking B12 is not going to hurt you. Your GP should really be giving it to you if only to rule it out as a cause of your symptoms. But then, doctors aren't actually very smart!

  • thanks so much for the info....

  • Hi Molly, as others have said here, your B12 is TECHNICALLY in the normal range, but it's firmly in the 'grey zone', i.e. is less than it should be by the standards of B12 experts and Japan, who treat anything under 500 as dysfunctional. I had B12 levels of 384, which is higher than yours, and I developed a serious neurological condition from B12 deficiency, which is incurable and degenerative: trigeminal neuralgia. I got B12 loading shots and am on monthly B12 maintenance shots, and it has sent the TN into remission. Your folate is definitely on the low side.

    If you are experiencing symptoms you can definitely argue for a trial of B12. If nothing else it will help prove whether the problem is B12 or some other problem, such as thyroid, that produces similar symptoms. Whatever you do, you should not allow yourself to be fobbed off. The results of neglecting the B12 deficiency are far too serious and often not reversible.

  • hi chancery, thanks so much for your reply, i have since the last post had another blood test...results are.....b 12= 290...serum folate= 5.8... ferritin=22.6. mean cell volume=99.0. i am back to to doctors on wed, of this week, just hopeing i can make him take notice.

  • Your MCV at 99 implies you may well be folate def and or B12 def, but again, with out the ref ranges and units used by your lab for "normal" it is difficult to say much. Do you not have any ref ranges for normal listed next to your results? High MCV can also be caused by other issues such as thyroid, do you have thyroid test results?

  • mcv range is 84.0-99.0. tsh result was 1.8.

  • Best to get active B12 test done, make sure not to start supplements before you have had all tests done!!

  • Hi Molly. Your B12 has fallen, so that's not a good sign, especially if the two tests are close together, time-wise. The folate is a tad better, but not exactly through the roof. I couldn't comment on ferritin; I've never had mine measured so I am ignorant about good or bad there. The MCV is high, IF the range is 78 - 98fl. You can tell that just by checking your reference range, which should be there, right beside it. It may well be normal. I'd say the only thing standing out there is your serum B12 level dropping; that would concern me. But Marre is right, you should check to see if they've checked your thyroid. Otherwise I'd be arguing over that grey zone B12; that doesn't look like a happy result to me.

  • Hi Sue,

    It would be good if you could have more testing such as the active B12 and possibly MMA, as your serum B12 is in the so called grey area, for more info see:


    Perhaps read the latest guidance in explains why serum B12 test is not very accurate and what other tests are good, see:

    Kind regards,


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