B12 recovery time?

I am 29 years old and I have been suffering from B12 deficiency since April 2016. My health was very bad at that time and I could not identify what it was. Initially, I thought the health issue was due to the kind of office work and lack of physical exercises. I am a software engineer and work 8 to 18 hours a day continuously in front of the computer. No any physical exercises in days. I was a vegetarian till the end of September 2016. I wasn’t drinking alcohol till the mid of December 2016 since my birth. After some research in the internet regarding what all I was feeling bad, I went for a medical checkup with a doctor. He suggested me a test of B12 level and found that my b12 level was 164picogram/ml completely below the range of 187 – 883 p/ml. The doctor gave me “Remylin D”. Despite with the supplement I was still the same. The symptoms I had that time are,

1.Anxiety, stress, depression.

2.Tiredness, Fatigue, loss of energy.

3.Excessive hair fall, overnight hair graying.

4.Brain fog.

5.Dizziness

6.Hands numb while sleeping, feels like I don’t have that hand.

7.Piercing pain in left side of chest and back of my head.

8.Inflammation on top of the head.

9.Digestion take more time.

Next, I went to see a neurology chief, the doctor after the checkup told me I have no issues and suggested “b long f” and “neurobion” injection for 6 weeks. After that I felt a bit better. Soon, I decided to eat non veg food, to bring b12 naturally up and stopped taking supplements. Some of the symptoms I mentioned above were gone and some persists. Finally I checked the b12 level again and the level climbed up to 504 picogram/ml, however, I was having depression, anxiety, Brain fog, tingling and numbness in hands and foot and inflammation on head, excessive hair graying, getting upset for silly matters. I use bike daily for traveling and now I have a problem of numbness and tingling in my testicles and penis. Recently, on May 2017, I started a consultation with a new doctor and he says my b12 level is in the range and need to check other factors to identify the persistent numbness and tingling happening due to the causes other than b12. I met a dermatologist for my hair loss and overnight hair graying and the doctor says it is due to stress and anxiety or chronic or can even the chemical pollutants in the air. I am totally upset and I would like to know when my disease will go?

Now I became too fat due to uncontrolled diet and my triglycerides is 271 out of 150mg/dl, VLDL 54mg/dl and SGPT/ALT 81 U/L out of 41. My thyroid level is normal. and I did NCV test and it is fine.

TSH (THYROID STIMULATING HORMONE) : 3.58 μIU/mL - [Adult :0.34 to 5.2 uIU/ml]

- checked on 26/Dec/2016

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14 Replies

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  • Hi Rakkie your vegetarian diet may well have contributed to your being Vitamin B12 deficient which in turn could possibly explain some of your neurological symptoms.

    Symptoms of B12 deficiency tend to develop slowly and may not be recognised immediately. As the condition worsens, common symptoms include some of those you listed.

    If low levels of B12 remain for a long time, the condition also can lead to irreversible damage to nerve cells, which can cause the following symptoms:

    Numbness and tingling in the hands and feet

    Difficulty walking

    Muscle weakness

    Irritability

    Memory loss

    Dementia

    Depression

    Psychosis

    That fact that your B12 level rose when you started eating meat suggests that you do not have an absorption problem and it is not uncommon for some symptoms to appear to get worse before they get better as the B12 starts to repair the damage done to your nervous system caused by the deficiency.

    In all the blood tests you had done do you know what your iron and Folate levels are? There is a complex interaction between folic acid, vitamin B12 and iron. A deficiency of one may be "masked" by excess of another so the three must always be in balance.

    I am not a medically trained person so do not understand or recognize the medications your doctors have prescribed but there are others on here who will be able to help.

    Are you in the U.K?

  • No, I am in India. I did not check the iron and folic acid levels. Thanks for pointing out that too.

  • Hi,

    I have read that sometimes people with normal range levels of B12 can still show signs of B12 deficiency.

    Different countries can have different patterns of treatment for B12 deficiency.

    Sources of B12 information

    1) Pinned posts on this forum

    2) Pernicious Anaemia Society website

    PAS is based in UK but has members from around the world.

    pernicious-anaemia-society....

    3) B12 Deficiency Info website

    b12deficiency.info/

    4) Book "What You Need to Know About Pernicious Anaemia and Vitamin B12 Deficiency" by Martyn Hooper. Martyn Hooper is the chairman of the Pernicious Anaemia Society.

    5) Book "Could it Be B12 ; An epidemic of Misdiagnoses" by Sally Pacholok and JJ. Stuart

    "May 2017, I started a consultation with a new doctor and he says my b12 level is in the range"

    Do you know what the actual B12 results were, in May 2017?

    I hope you find the answers you need.

    I am not medically trained just a person who has struggled to find out what is wrong with me.

  • In May 2017, I tested and the value diminished to 341 from 504. On May1 I stopped eating meat. But doctor told me it is not a problem and the value will fluctuate and I am inline to the b12 level. After that a high dose of b12 injection was taken and again I started to have meat. The doctor could even not understanding the problem and he suggests many blood tests.

    One of the doctors to whom I asked these issues some weeks ago told me to visit a psychiatrist. I don't understand why the doctor said like that. I explained all the above symptoms and my current situation.

  • I had B12 of 385 with loads of symptoms and was told several times it wasn't B12 deficiency. Further testing showed over the range MCV (mean corpuscular volume), was told this was irrelevant (?) and still no diagnoses but I could have some anti-depressants!! I took great exception to being offered anti-depressants to cover up the ignorance of doctors, its just putting the blame on you.

    Now have a diagnoses of PA.

  • I think if MCV is high could be liver disease or Hemolytic anemia, a condition in which the red blood cells are destroyed earlier than they should be or there is too little vitamin B12 or folic acid in the body. It was clearly the later in your case Cassie

  • Hello Rakkie,

    I am also having the same issue as mentioned here by you. My B12 levels were 123 with severe neurological symptoms. Am put on weekly Neurobion forte inj for the past 6 months. Though there are few improvements in my neurological conditions, but no major relief, still tired most of the time and severe fatique.

    Had a tough time diagnosing and getting the right treatment.

    Since you have this issue due to your vegetarian diet, probably you could be able to come out of this with continous medications as suggested by your doctor. For me its absorbtion issue hence need to have injection for long years.....

    My understanding is that, people who were deficient for long , probably the recovery will take a bit longer... thats what I understood after talking to and listening to the B12 stories....

    Best wishes

    mahesh

  • Did you do endoscopy to know the absorbtion issue?

  • nope... i didn't do that.... prob i wld need to see that option if things are becoming worse....

    which hospital are you getting treatment..?

  • Trivandrum Medical college, Apollo clinic - law college junction, Trivandrum. Next, I need to go Ananthapuri hospital, Trivandrum, which is famous for gastro.

  • . how are you feeling now... how often are you getting injection now... are you still getting Neurobion Injection, am in Bangalore...it was very tough to get proper treatment for this here. i've suffered for so many years... let me know.. if you found some good doctor/hospital who is good at treating B12...

  • Now, I don't take Neurobion. I use to visit Apollo clinic, there is a doctor colin, GP.

    Thomas Iype, a neurology chief, in Trivandrum medical college. He is a good doctor. But, getting his appointment is very tough as there will much rush everyday for getting his consultation.

    - What do I do now is, I eat non veg food. Although, I do have tingling and numbness in feet and foot, overnight hair greying, tiredness I planning daily physical exercise to make my cardio vascular stronger, and to get stronger mind set to overcome these tensions.

    I recommend the KIMS and ananthapuri hospitals, there in Trivandrum. Are u Keralite?

  • Thanks for all these info

    Am from alappuzha, now living in bangalore

  • Not did yet. My present doctor did not tell that test yet. But, One of my friends, who is doctor, suggested me for checking it up with any gastro doctor.

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