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Pernicious Anaemia Society
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Affects on b12

Hi, it’s been a while since I last posted as I have been doing ok (not great but better than before injections & still fighting with gp to increase frequency)

My question is, what affects can alcohol or illness have on b12 injections?

Usually after my 12 weekly injection I notice an improvement in symptoms, not like a sudden burst of energy but more that I’m less aware of my symptoms which gradually then increase as the weeks go on, this time though I was incredibly hungover and full of a cold when I had my injection (I rarely drink at all but got carried away on a works do and haven’t had a single drop over Christmas as just the thought makes me queasy) I’ve not noticed any improvement at all! I’m still really dizzy, struggling to stay awake in the evenings (or at points during the day) I’ve got pins and needles in my hands and the sleep hallucinations are still happening.

Could there be something else going on or could there have been some issues with the alcohol or cold?

Wondering how I’ll manage the next 3 months now.

Thanks so much.

4 Replies

Do you know what your Folate level is?

It is important that your Folate level is monitored as this is essential to process the B12.

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.

Symptoms of a folate deficiency can include:

symptoms related to anaemia

reduced sense of taste


numbness and tingling in the feet and hands

muscle weakness


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

I am not a medically trained person but I've had P.A. (a form of B12 deficiency) for more than 45 years.

I wish you well


1 like

Thanks Clive, I’m not sure what my levels are now but from previous tests I only seem to be able to stay in range with folate and iron if I take supplements. I have a good diet, full of leafy greens and meats but I’m still quite low.

I missed my vitamins for about 3 days from the 15th December (injection on the 18th) as I was feeling so rough but have been taking them since, could just those 3 days have an impact? Hopefully if that is the case then now I’ve been taking them properly for almost 2 weeks I might start to improve.

Thanks again.


Unfortunately the "one size fits all" syndrome simply cannot work for everyone because we are all different.

I don't know whether a three day "abstinence" of vitamins would cause such a severe reaction. Some contributors on here need their B12 on a daily or two day basis.

It may be that you have an absorption problem. Was your deficiency ever "pinned down" to a cause?

Personally I have taken 1 – Folic Acid 400μg and 1 – Iron Ferrous Fumarate 210mg tablet every day for more years than I can remember and I also supplement with a B12 Methylcobamalin mouth spray each morning in addition to an injection of Cyanocobamalin B12 every three weeks.

I hope you get to feel better soon.

1 like

It’s a really long story, in short, diagnosed b12 deficiency 2012, gp stopped injections a year later, finally got them reinstated June this year. Negative IFA, not taking any medication or vegan/vegetarian so cause unknown.

Thanks for your help, I’ll keep on top of other vitamins and see how I go.


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