Shortness of breath and low B12 - Pernicious Anaemi...

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Shortness of breath and low B12

Anonymous0130 profile image

Hello, i am new here. For a month now, i have been facing a mild difficulty in taking a satisfactory deep breath at almost all times during the day and no issues at night. My B12 level is 204 which is low and vit d is 29. The doctor recommended adenosyl OD tabs but there has been no improvement since 2 weeks. I am 27 year old female and am really worried! I dont have any other symptoms-- fatigue etc. Is it something else?

18 Replies

What's your iron and ferritin levels like? I'm not familiar with the tablets but go back to your doctor if they are not doing anything.

It could be the start of low b12 symptoms so really important to monitor . Have you a bench mark b12 level do you know if its gradually gone down?

Was your folate checked?

Are you on vitamin d ?

Hope you get some answers soon

Hey, thanks for responding. my iron is normal level of 13. And yes, i have been taking adenosyl od for b12 deficiency for 2 weeks now and vit d every week. The doctor has told me to wait for some more time but the wait is driving me crazy! I am not sure if 2 weeks no improvement is normal.

This was the first time i got b12 tested and nope, folate was not tested.

Do ask for folate to be tested. T C

tassu50 profile image
tassu50 in reply to Nackapan

i asked my dr to test my folic levels and he said they don’t test those #s

Nackapan profile image
Nackapan in reply to tassu50

Of course they can check folate levels?? Normally done at the same time as b12 at 5he start.

tassu50 profile image
tassu50 in reply to Nackapan

i asked my dr but he said they don’t test that here (canada) :(

in reply to Anonymous0130

Do you have a range for that iron level? So we can see where you fall in the range. 'Normal' and optimal are two different things.

Anonymous0130 profile image
Anonymous0130 in reply to

Hey my iron level was 13 and the range was given as 12 to 16

in reply to Anonymous0130

I agree with Nackapan that you should ask for your Folate to be checked but your iron level is quite low. You're only 25% through the range.

You might find an improvement in your symptoms when you're in the upper quadrant of the range. 🙂

Hello, I have had quite a journey with breathlessness. it’s complicated because there are a few things that can cause it. When mine was worse at certain times of the day, it was low cortisol. Many people with low B12 have adrenal insufficiency without realising it. Could you get a fasting 9am cortisol test done? It should be over 500 nmol/L. I’m afraid it is an area that GPs tend to vary on their opinion. Guidelines say that if it’s under 300 the patient should be referred to an Endocrinologist. Do you find it’s worse before your period?

The other cause, I found, was from B12 def issues - nerves and muscles in diaphragm area and rib cage. I had costochondritis (where intercostal muscles feel hard - is your rib cage feeling sore?) which went after 2 injections. The diaphragm areas is still healing - I can feel some burning sensations.

My Vit D was also low and that caused a different type of breathlessness for me - but it was constant and didn’t go at night time. It came with shin pain and aches (although it’s hard to say if these were B12 def symptons)

Hope that helps!

Hey thanks for your response. I hope you are feeling better now :)

My breathlessness seems to be pretty same throughout the day and i dont wake up at night due to it so i am assuming its not an issue.

N no, it doesnt seem to have any relation with my period. One week ago, i had a day when i delt completely fine though and i was so happy but well it came right back the next day.

I talked to another doctor yesterday and he just brushed it off and said i should just continue b12 as its only been two weeks. He didnt even ask me any questions. It is so annoying when doctors make you feel like you are making it up.

The fact that you have it through the day and not at night (and vice versa) could still mean it’s low cortisol.

And like I wrote above, it could also be some weird and wonderful symptom of B12 deficiency...If you inject frequently, it might go...

Good luck x

Hi, I was exactly the same with breathlessness. My doctor prescribed folic acid alongside my B12 injections. This cured it for me. I still have to take folic acid daily five years on. Hope you feel better soon.

Hey thanks, this is reassuring!! How long did it take for you to not feel breathless? Did you feel breathless at rest as well?

Hi, probably a few weeks. I run 10km four times a week now! My B12 level was 129 when diagnosed. Make your Doctor work with you until you're happy with your quality of life.

I had a Ferratin level of 4 (min is 12) but haemoglobin was fine (14). Also had low b12 (132). Important to get full blood count so that you get a break down.

I went from running daily to been unable to catch a breath after a mile. I think it was due to Ferratin which is your iron stores so they might be low which results in really hard work for body to get oxygen around.

I think the description you gave might be a key "mild difficulty in taking a satisfactory deep breath" it is different from becoming breathless easily which can be due to iron or folate , etc, levels. I had the same trouble and feel that it is part of the effect of reduction in the energy transfer down the nerve pathways due to the B12 deficiency, (mine improved following B12 injections). I see that effect in other functions too. I am concerned he has given you an oral supplement without finding out why you have deficiencies. Are you vegetarian or vegan as they are the only reasons for deficiency that can be presumed to be fixed by oral supplements. As well as checking your levels as recommended above, get him to check your Protein levels - if you are on a normal diet and find out they are low then that is a clue that you have an absorbency issue and should be having B12 as injections, asap. If it is the beginning of neuropathy that is causing you difficulty in breathing fully it will be throughout your body and other disfunctions will begin to be noticeable. The longer they are left the less recovery you might get. Please let us know how you get on :-)

Hi OP, I know this is an old post. I have the same issue as you, just wondering if supplementing solved the issue?

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