Log in
Pernicious Anaemia Society
16,611 members11,509 posts

B12 borderline deficient

Hi all

Update time. GP blood tests confirmed my private results in that I am borderline deficient in B12. Just awaiting doctor to call back and confirm course of action. He did state previously that if I need a jab I could be on them for life but isn't that only if I'm diagnosed with pernicious anaemia? If I haven't, wouldn't just a short course of jabs get my levels back up?

Since my blood test I have been taking a sublingual high dose spray to try and up my levels before the doctor treats me. A week in and I feel no different. Could this mean something e.g. that I'm not just deficient but have PA? Or should I wait longer to start feeling better? I seem to be getting weaker with muscles aching more. I am in pain today with sore leg/glute muscles as if I had done a lot of exercise over the weekend but I most definitely did not, merely walked to the bus and back! Could this be an indication of anything?

Thanks for any help. I am determined to get to the bottom of this


6 Replies

If the spray hasn't helped the symptoms, it might mean that you have PA. Haven't you been tested for antibodies to Intrinsic Factor,which prove PA? But even this test is not 100 % conclusive,as your doctor should know. If the symptoms persist , injections will be the way forward. And yes if you have PA you will need injections for the rest of your life. Very best wishes to you 🍀


Thanks for the reply. How long should it be before I should feel better on just the spray? I've just ordered B12 patches to see if they make a difference, which I assume work like the injections rather than the spray?


I used Spray, patches, sub-lingual lozenges to no effect at all after my GP told me that my B12 was low.(He didn't prescribe anything except to eat plenty of folate B9) They all had no effect on my symptoms. I went to a private doctor who tested me for IF antibodies. Test proved I had PA and my B12 was sky high, through the supplementation, but was not getting though to the cells.Injections are the only thing that work for me and most PA patients. So if you do have PA, which is sometimes difficult to prove with the IF test , the spray and patches probably won't help you at all,. I have to self-inject as my GP will not let me have more that 1 injection every 3 months, which is insufficient to keep symptoms at bay . You will hear this a lot on this site. P.A. Patients cannot absorb B12 in their stomachs because they need Intrinsic Factor and stomach acid to do this, and they lack both. If you are B12 deficient because you are a vegan, or very strict vegetarian ,then the patches ,lozenges etc.should work for you,as B12 is only found in animal products ---Meat, fish, eggs and dairy. No, I'm afraid the patches do not work like the spray if you have PA . If they did doctors would prescribe them I'm sure---much less trouble to them! Hope that this has helped you a bit! ( I think some very small absorption can take place but it is minuscule )

1 like

depends iof you have PA or not


Dont think gp would dole out patches, they are more expensive than injection.work out at about £2.50 each as opposed to injection which is less than a pound. I use them, both methly and cyan they work but only about a week at most. Injection lasts about two two and a half weeks for me.


If you have a good GP then he will test you for anti-IF antibodies. If positive then you definitely have PA and will be on injections for life.

If you test negative then you may have PA (50% of sufferers test negative). A good GP will investigate for other possible causes (taking PPIs, being vegan, having had GI surgery in the past). If none of them apply then he should assume you have PA and start you on a course of injections for life. A short course of jabs will get your levels up, but the chances are they will drop again with the potential of causing some serious damage.

1 like

You may also like...