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Unread 07-03-2003, 05:03 PM

For you ladies that have suffered real low iron levels requiring teatment what kind of symptoms did you have to make you seek treatment? My last blood test several weeks ago said mine was a little low, since then I have had a horrific period(its ended now) and have felt fatigued, week, headachy, lightheaded and just blaaaa. I am just wondering if my iron has gone lower or its just cause I am overwieght and out of shape and have been a little stressed. I dont want to go to the doctors or urgent care and feel like a fool and be told your just overweight and out of shape go home. (Oh the embaressment that would be)

Thanks for all your responses to my constant questions these past weeks
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Unread 07-03-2003, 07:07 PM


I don't have any personal experience to share with you, but I think you should call your doctor - only he can tell why you are feeling this way. Please don't ever be embarrassed to call your . It's much better to go see him unnecessarily then to not go and end up with a serious problem.

Please let us know how you are feeling, and what you find out from your doctor.

Unread 07-03-2003, 07:35 PM

Hi, just wanted to tell you that i suffered from severe anemia, my periods were lasting 10 days, i was tired, moody and just plain (like you said) BLAAAA! When i had my period and i was at work, i just wanted to sleep, when i got home i just wanted to sleep. My gyn did blood work and saw that it was very low, that's what started all my tests and eventually found that i had fibroids and needed a hyst. Everybody is different, but that was my experince and if i were you i would definitely call my doc. hope this helps.


TAH/BSO on 3/24 for fibriods, adeno, endo and ovarian cysts
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Unread 07-03-2003, 08:54 PM
Hi Stacy,

I had anemia before my surgery last year too. I ended up in the hospital ER a couple of times because I was so weak that I almost passed out.

Your symptoms do sound like anemia. I was extremely fatigued, to the point of barely being able to walk. I'd get short of breath, lightheaded, dizzy, and just felt blahhhh.

See if you can make an appointment with your doctor to get checked out. In the meantime, you may want to increase your iron intake, either through vitamins or eating foods containing iron, such as leafy green veggies, cream of wheat, organ meats, etc.

Best wishes and s,

Unread 07-03-2003, 09:04 PM

Hi Stacey,
I also had anemia and had similar symptoms to what you've
described. I agree with the other posts--call your doctor, they
might want to put you on prescription iron pills. But if they
do, ask them about Colace, to help with constipation which
is common with the iron pills. Hope you feel better soon!
Ct lily
Unread 07-03-2003, 09:29 PM
low iron anemia

Hi, I've been reading the posts concerning your symptoms. I have experienced similar weakness, heavy bleeding, frequent menstruation and back pain...... I used to donate blood to the blood bank for years, but, last year i had been turned down 6 times in a row due to low iron levels. Apparrently, according to their method of assessment one must have a minimum level of 12 in order to donate blood. Apparrently once u donate blood, afterwards your blood iron level typically drops. If it drops below 10 then that is dangerous for people. My physician sent me for lab tests to ensure my iron levels were not dangerously low. It was concluded that my level was 10.5 whatever that really means, but according to my doctor this was not good... it borders on serious iron deficiency. He put me on perscription iron supplement tablets for a 90 day course. Also, he told me to take it on an empty stomach if possible and take either vitimin c tablet supplement or drink something with vitimin c concentrate. Apparrently it takes at least 90 days after treatment with iron supplements to replenish to normal levels. If the iron treatments dont work to increase the levels of iron there could be a problem absorbing the iron and would require further treatment which could include injections and possible blood transfusion if serious. I am on the iron tablets and vitimin c now.... hope it helps. I am having a hysterectomy including the removal of ovaries sometime in the fall. MY anemia, pain, heavy bleeding and frequent periods etc are becoming increasingly difficult to manage. He did mention an option of trying endometrial oblation first, or go on the pill, or use an iud but, those did not apeal to me. You may find alternatives favorable, my sister in law had the oblation and its working for her. MY friend had lazer hysterectomy ... no outside cutting........ she is doing well. Dont be afraid to discuss with a doctor your symptoms. I was shy at first too, but i sufferred two years longer than necessary... ask to see a specialist to discuss this more. Hope my long winded response is at least partially helpful take care and good luck. Sheila
Unread 07-03-2003, 09:43 PM

Hey Girl after a 22 day period of heavy bleeding I put myself on over the counter time released iron. I started feeling better. I got off when I felt better but since a new period began I guess I will begin them again. Good Luck!!!
Unread 07-04-2003, 02:09 AM

Responding to Staci: For me symptoms of anemia were near fainting upon standing, fatigue, shortness of breath and paleness. Since the birth of my last baby in 1999 I became severly anemic. Throughout my entire pregnancies I was unable to tolorate oral iron supplements of any kind. After many painful experiments with doseage and brands and fiber and a rectal/vaginal perforation (from severe constipation) and repair surgery someone finally believed when I said I can't take iron supplements!
On my very 1st. visit to my NEW Ob/Gyn (1yr. after the last birth) I was also introduced to her husband who is a Hemotologist (blood Dr.) they share the same office suite. That day I began taking weekly IV iron supplementation, I don't even remember how low my numbers were at the time! After several months of treatment he decided to see how well I "held" on my own. After 2 months of heavy menstrual bleeding I was back in the danger zone! This past Mon. 6/30th. I had my uterus removed after 4 yrs
of unexplained heavy bleeding. Pathology report: Adenomyosis
I feel better already, my presurgical count was 13something due to IV supplements over the past 5 weeks.

Staci, If ever you feel bad, don't feel embarrased to ask why????
It's your body telling you something......hope this helps
Unread 07-04-2003, 05:56 AM

If you get this treated now you will handle surgery much better. If they find you are too anemic close to the surgery date that could force them to cancel your surgery until things are treated and get better. We have had a couple of ladies have that happen to them. so don't delay and get this checked out with your doctor. I was on iron for 4 months before I even got diagnosed as needing a hyst, just from the anemia from my periods.
Unread 07-04-2003, 08:27 AM
Low FE or....

Hi Morningsglory~
Your seesters are so very right when they suggest a visit to your GCP (Internist) to get your levels re-checked. Beddy-beddy important...
Now, have you already been diagnosed by your GYN of any blood-sucking fibroids? (I see you're Pre-Op). If you can afford it & your health care covers it, perhaps an ultrasound is in order for you. That's the only difinitive way to be absolutely sure as it might be more difficult for your GYN to "feel" any fibroid if you're "overweight".
However, from personal experience with a continual 4-6 anemia count, and as a HUGE Thyroid advocate - perhaps you should also consider getting all of your thyroid levels checked; TSH, T4, T3 & reverse T3. Your health care ought to cover that as well, esp. if you're presenting "anemic" symptoms. Often Hypo & anemia go hand in hand... Just got a bill (that should have gone to health care - new GCP.'s mistake) from recent Thyroid Full panel and it was no more than $150.
Were you always "overweight" as you stated? Was this weight gain a gradual thing or an immediate gain?

In the early 90's I was told by someone that I looked "yellow". At that time, I had my own Gardening business, and no health care. I was very active around the clock AND drank the beers a lot. I thought perhaps liver problems - but never pursued further diagno$i$. Just thought my exhaustion was due to working so much.(side note - after 9 years with my face in the flowers full time- I unfortunately had to call it quits with Gardening since it's not as easy for us women to "go" behind a tree, ESPECIALLY with Aunt Flo around if you catch my drift
My GYN happen to be a customer of mine, so she was always able to see my level of activity and we always knew I should have been taking Slo-Fe - but I was really bad at that. I didn't want the constipation, only to supplement with stool softeners. I hate taking pills in the first place - so I focused on eating more foods rich in Iron..... (which never change any levels)
Well, in '98, after finally saving up some $$,I returned to GYN for a 3 year LATE PAP. I waited so long for this particular check-up since previous 3 PAP's all entailed "pre-cancerous cells", painful 3 chunck at a time cervical biopsies which each concluded a not so sneezable $500.00 "nothing to be alarmed with" .
At the beginning of that visit, GYN told me to loose 15 lb's and proceeded with the womanly exam. End of visit, I mentioned I was feeling rather punk and totally not myself: intolerant to any temp below 75 degrees, dry skin, irritable, seeing light flashes with eyes shut, brittle hair, crying for no reason at all, sleeping ALL the time, etc. She ordered a Thyroid test and sent me on my way~ "Look fine, feel fine, loose that weight, and see you next year unless you hear from us about your PAP." On my merry-merry...
I have another post to a Sister re: the eventuality of that Thyroid test - which was very alarming. Scored a 98 when normal levels range 1. - 4.0.
Ultimately Morningsglory, I strongly suggest you see if you can have an ULTRASOUND and get your THYROID tested. I worry so much for anyone who feels the way you do, when all it could be is a matter of some simple tests, healthcare and pocketbook willing.
As far as my anemia level? I trust that the next time I see my GYN she'll perform an iron test, since it will have been "long enough" for my body to recoup from May TAH & levels hopefully elevated to normal range, cuz I really don't want to keep investigating any other cause for my obtuse anemia. Just praying it was those blood sucking fibroids drinkin' all my iron!
I'll send some good prayers and vibes your way for a speedy diagnosis - but remember that any therapy will take some time to feel the full benefits
Thanks for letting me add my 2 cents - and thank you to the rest of the seesters for being there! Happy Independence day!

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