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B12 deficiency and anaemia
One of the major misconceptions about a B12 deficiency is that it is always accompanied by anaemia, or that without anaemia a deficiency is nothing serious. Many patients are being missed because physicians only test B12 when anaemia is present…
Vitamin B12 deficiency in children
Recent studies have shown that a vitamin B deficiency in children occurs more often than previously assumed. Often presenting itself with non-specific symptoms such as developmental delays, a diverging growth curve, anorexia, irritability, neurological problems and weakness..
Neuropsychiatric symptoms of B12 deficiency: not just in the elderly and often without anaemia
The psychiatric symptoms due to a B12 deficiency can precede the other symptoms, among which the well known anaemia, in some cases even with years. These psychiatric symptoms include….
Treatment with high dose vitamin B12 shown to be safe for more than 50 years
Out of fear of overdosing vitamin B12, treatment is often reduced to below the frequency that is needed by the patient, or, even worse, treatment is stopped completely. As a result, symptoms can reoccur again and again and even become irreversible.
Testing B12 during treatment
During treatment with vitamin B12 injections, serum B12 is often tested to ascertain the frequency of injections, to see if the value rises, or to base maintenance treatment on.
However, this value says nothing about the effect of the treatment….
Intrinsic factor and Pernicious Anaemia
Pernicious Anaemia is one of the most frequent causes of vitamin B12 deficiency; and almost always an auto-immune disease. Characterized by chronic inflammation and atrophy (thinning or shrivelling) of the mucous membrane of the stomach and the diminished amount, or total lack, of parietal cells and intrinsic factor.
Methylmalonic acid is an organic acid of which the blood levels are usually raised in case of a B12 deficiency. A lack of adenosylcobalamin causes raised blood levels of MMA. In short: a B12 deficiency (usually) causes high MMA…
Serum B12 is often not sufficient to diagnose a deficiency
Current literature recommends measuring MMA and/or homocysteine (HC) whenever vitamin B12 is below 200 or 300 pmol/l. If these recommendations had been followed, three (from the seven) patients with a vitamin B12 deficiency (based on serum values) would have been missed.
The serum B12 test is still widely used as thé test to confirm or rule out a vitamin B12 deficiency. However, a normal value cannot rule out a B12 deficiency as has often been shown in scientific medical literature.
Serum B12 can be false normal or even false high when a deficiency is present…
Misconceptions about a B12 deficiency
The most common misconceptions about a B12 deficiency among physcicians. If we could at least correct these misconceptions, we would be a lot closer to an earlier and better diagnosis, and better treatement, and so save many people from unnecessary suffering ánd save millions of euro’s.
How often does B12 deficiency occur?
B12 deficiency occurs much more frequently than generally assumed. People often mistakenly think that a deficiency only occurs in sufferers of pernicious anemia or strict vegetarians. There are, however, many more factors that can cause a deficiency..