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Pernicious Anaemia Society
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Serious memory loss - do I have B12 deficiency or PA?

I am diagnosed Mild Cognitive Impairment Other symptoms would b balance problems - fell last week, clumsy - banging into stable objects, cold all the time, memory loss (big), etc . vegetarian, dizzy, osteopaena

I am now taking 3 x 400IU calcichew D3 with magnesium, vit k-2, Thorne B-complex with folate.

My 1st blood test at end of August showed my B12 level as 266 ng/L (170 - 730) Ferritin 50 ug/L (10 - 290)

Folate 8.7 ug/L (3 - 19)

Vit D 92.4 ol/L (50.00 - 200.00)

TSH level 3.47 miu/L (0.3 - 5.0)

Medichecks Blood Test approx end October as follows:

ENDOCRINOLOGYThyroid FunctionTHYROID STIMULATING HORMONE 2.01 mIU/L 0.27 - 4.20 FREE THYROXINE 15.800 pmol/L 12.00 - 22.00 FREE T3 4.63 pmol/L 3.10 - 6.80 THYROGLOBULIN ANTIBODY 10.900 IU/mL 0.00 - 115.00 THYROID PEROXIDASE ANTIBODIES <9.0 IU/mL 0.00 - 34.00 HAEMATOLOGYVitaminsACTIVE B12 184.000 pmol/L 37.50 - 188.00 FOLATE (SERUM) 7.13 ug/L 3.89 - 26.80 25 OH VITAMIN D 92.5 nmol/L 50.00 - 200.00 BIOCHEMISTRYInflammation MarkerCRP - HIGH SENSITIVITY, Ferritin. 71.3 ug/L. 13.00 - 150.00

A reason for the v high B12 level here is that I foolishly accepted the offer of a B12 injection and skewed the results. So, I haven't got a clue as to the accurate result. R u able to give me yr opinion in spite of my silliness; my stakes are v high.

I am currently having another TSH test because the last one with Medichecks was done NOT early in morning and NOT fasting. Foolish again.

11 Replies


I am not medically trained but from personal experience I know it is possible to have severe B12 deficiency with results that are within normal range.

In UK, guidelines say that if a patient is symptomatic for B12 deficiency then they should be treated even if B12 level is within range. Sadly some GPs don't realise this.

B12 Deficiency Symptoms



Link about "What to Do Next" if B12 deficiency suspected.


UK B12 documents

If you're in UK, I suggest reading all of these articles/documents.

BSH Cobalamin and Folate Guidelines


Flowchart from BSH Cobalamin and Folate Guidelines


BMJ B12 article






B12 books I found useful

"What You Need to Know About Pernicious Anaemia and B12 Deficiency" by Martyn Hooper

Martyn Hooper is the chair of PAS (Pernicious Anaemia Society). Book is up to date with UK b12 guidelines.

"Living with Pernicious Anaemia and Vitamin B12 Deficiency" by Martyn Hooper

Has several case studies.

"Could it Be B12?: An Epidemic of Misdiagnoses" by Sally Pacholok and JJ. Stuart (USA authors)

Very comprehensive with lots of case studies.

PAS (Pernicious Anaemia Society)

Based in Wales, UK. Offers support and info about PA.


PAS tel no +44 (0)1656 769717 answerphone

B12 Deficiency Info website


UK B12 Blogs

Martyn Hooper's blog about PA


B12 Deficiency Info blog


Letters to GP about B12


Point 5 in above link is about being symptomatic for B12 deficiency with an in range B12 result.

Do you have results for Full Blood Count (FBC)?

Probably worth putting your thyroid results on Thyroid UK forum on HU.

More B12 info in pinned posts on this forum. I have also written some very detailed posts in past, may be worth searching for them.

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What does the "full blood count" look like. Is it "total white cell count, red blood count, etc". I have a list of "blood count/differential". Is that it. Thanks for yr reply.


a full blood count is a count of all the cells (white and red) in your blood, along with some metrics, particularly on the red blood cells - usually the average width, and haemoglobin content.

Did you notice any improvement in any of your symptoms as a result of the B12 shot.

Unfortunately you may now have a very long wait before you can get a reasonable baseline - at least 3 months, possibly more.

You could ask to be tested for PA - IFA antibodies - but that isn't a very sensitive test. Although a positive is good evidence that you do have PA a negative is a long way from being good evidence that you don't.

You could try testing for either MMA or homocysteine - would be very high if you are functionally deficient.

Reality is though that you are probably better of not going for tests until after sorting out what is, or is not going on with the thyroid.


Thanks for coming back to me. No, haven't noticed any improvement in symptoms from B12 shot. in case it is of help these iron levels r from my first blood test:

Ferritin 71.3 ug/L. 13.00 - 150.00

Folate 7.13 ug/L. 3.89 - 26.80

( just to see if u can compare them to Medichecks after B12 injection)

Are the antibodies u mentioned not on the Medichecks test results? Unfortunately when u r describing the blood count, I do not understand any of the content. Wld it b any help if I list the results from gp blood test from the page showing

"Blood count/differential"? It shows RBC count, harmoglobin, etc?

Thanks again for yr reply and interest.


The antibody tests you had are to do with thyroid not PA. Don't think medichecks do IFA

Ferritin is one measure of iron and your level looks okay

Folate is another vitamin - B9. - no significant change between the two results. It is very responsive to dietary intake.


Ok. I appreciate yr time and help. Thanks gambit.


you may need a full thyroid check. 6 tests in all. are you off gluten.


No, I am not off glutin. Wld gluten relate to memory loss, balance, etc?


When you mentioned balance i thought of adrenal insuffuciency- saw Dr peatfield and he did balance tests which brought me to adrenal insuffucienct

Sorry if off track, id also had a lot of vertigo at that point x


Not off track. Everything I hear is valuable. Thanks jeppy.

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.....i see it as holistic from own experience

Not just one broken cog, each cog driving the next cog

Iv batted on about my gut health as it reads that gut health is fundamental to all health ( leaky gut and flora ) makes complete sense

You dont absorb nutrients if the lining has tiny pin prick holes and they leak, and re gluten its is unkind on the system as hard to digest -

I have wondered in fact why it isnt taken more seriously by everybody, and readily heals with glutamine and clean diet

Also i couldnt tolerate thyroid meds until I began supporting my adrenals, even though urine tests came back ‘ normal’ they were in fact insufficient -

Whats more i could tell myself when Dr P tested them via basic old school measures that there was imbalance there

Looking back over years Id bang into this and that, and just thought I was clumsy or rushing

Good wishes

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