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Pernicious Anaemia Society
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Low ferritin level?

Originally posted on the thyroid forum but got no replies :-(

Anyone here care to comment?

I’ve recently had some blood tests done by the GP and my ferritin level is 69 (range 20 - 300). I am a 59 year old male. My iron levels and haemoglobin are both in range. By my calculations my ferritin is only about 17.5% of the range and I was also of the opinion that a healthy figure for a man should be around 100?

I am suffering from irritability and insomnia, both of which I believe can be symptoms of low ferritin levels. If I was to start taking a supplement, what would be best? (that I can obtain without a prescription)

2 Replies

Hi seamail57 were your serum B12 and Folate tested?

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.

Folic acid works closely with vitamin B12 in making red blood cells and helps iron function properly in the body.

If you have thyroid problems this may put you at risk of developing a B12 deficiency.

I'm not a medically trained person but there others on here who will be able to give you advice.


seamail57 - although this forum has anaemia in the title pernicious anaemia is actually a bit of a misnomer. It is actually a condition that causes problems absorbing B12 which will cause a particularly type of anaemia called macrocytic/megaloblastic anaemia in which red blood cells are rounder and larger than normal, where as iron based anaemias tend to be microcytic - red blood cells smaller.

Many people with problems absorbing B12 do have problems with other vitamins and minerals.

The normal range is a statistical average of where most people will be when they are healthy and there will always be some outliers. Not sure where your 100 as being healthy for a man comes from - the range for men does differ from that for menstruating women but I didn't think it was that different.

Have you had a full blood count and other vitamins and minerals checked? Whilst you are right that the symptoms you list are symptoms of low ferritin, they are also symptoms of a lot of other conditions, which would include folate and B12 deficiency, but also include thyroid problems.


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