Pernicious Anaemia Society
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Help please, could it be B.12?

I am convinced that my boyfriend has problems absorbing B.12. He is showing some worrying signs of severe loss of memory and other symptoms. His B.12 blood tests are within the 'normal' range, which means according to our G.P. there isn't a problem. I want John to get a referral to a haematologist would this be the right route to go? Just don't know which way to turn, or would it be a good idea to get a private test, in which case who would do a B12 Intrinsic Test?

Thank you

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3 Replies

What were hIs results, including the range? Often 'normal' means 'only just normal'. If it was in the lower half of the range then ask for an MMA test plus and intrinsic factor test.


I'd suggest that you put together a list of symptoms/risk factors


look through materials in the pinned posts for details about the need to interpret test results for serum B12 in context of symptoms, eg


NICE guidelines are referral to a haematologist as part of the investigation of the cause of B12 deficiency. B12 deficiency leads to a blood disorder but it isn't a blood disorder itself.

PA isn't the only absorption problem that can lead to B12 deficiency - just the most common one. IF test is a specific test for PA as a cause but is only about 50% acurate - ie a negative result doesn't rule out PA as the cause.

Unfortunately haematologists can be just as lacking in knowledge of B12 as GPs so think that pushing for a referral at this point might actually not get you anywhere.

There are also a lot of other conditions where the symptoms overlap so it may not be B12 but if he is having cognitive problems then it definitely needs investigating. Have you tried for a referral to a memory specialist?


Thank you Gambit for your informative reply, I shall be reading through this weekend.


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