In the past I had low ferritin & have been supplementing fr yrs. Its now much higher at 89. However, I have read that it is important to have a full iron panel which includes CBC, serum iron and transferrin saturation rate etc in addition to just ferritin. I am wondering just how necessary it is to have these additional blood tests and if so how would you go about getting them. Are they available from yr GP or would I have to have them done privately. If so where.

4 Replies

  • Where do you live? Where you live makes a difference to what the answer is and who can answer.

    In the UK (where I'm from), it is possible your GP might do some or all of the tests you want if you ask. If they won't do them then it is possible to pay for tests to be done privately without getting a doctor involved. Please note that CBC stands for Complete Blood Count. This abbreviation and name is used in the USA. A UK doctor would know it as FBC = Full Blood Count.

    I know nothing about getting private blood tests in the USA or in other countries.

  • Thks fr yr reply. I am in W London.

  • In that case, you might be lucky and get them from your GP. Remember to ask for a Full Blood Count rather than a CBC, as I mentioned.

    As to how necessary it is... Lots of people can't afford the tests which does make it harder to decide whether or not you should supplement with anything. The fact that you know your ferritin is 89 means that you are getting some tests done for you by your GP. In that case, ask for a copy of all your blood test results including the actual numbers and the reference ranges. They may charge you. For very recent blood tests - those done in the last 40 days - the results should be provided free. But for older tests there should be a maximum charge of £10 (for all of them, not each). You could ask for all your test results going back a year or two or five. It's up to you. Hopefully they may not charge at all, or will only charge for ink and paper. If asking them worries you, make your request to the receptionists by phone or write a letter to your doctor. Don't make phone calls when the receptionists will be at their busiest. Mid afternoon or later is a good time to call. Give the receptionists time to ask the doctor for permission to print them. They don't have the authority to do it without that. You may have to wait a day or two, but no more than that.

    For more information :

    If your GP won't do any tests for you then there are companies that will do tests privately. For more info on testing look at this link :

    Depending on which tests you are interested in you may need phlebotomy to be done. Some tests can be done with finger prick kits so no phlebotomy is required. It is worth asking your surgery or your local NHS hospital how much they would charge to take blood. The charge made varies a lot.

  • Many thanks. Seeing GP this pm.

You may also like...