Monday, June 18, 2012

Vitamin B12 Deficiency the forgotten killer

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Could it be B12? Yes in my case it was. B12 Deficiency once a major killer is now mainly ignored  by the present day doctors and goes so undiagnosed leaving sufferers with a life of misery and even early death. A simple blood test and a course of cheap safe B12 injections can restore life to normal if diagnosed in its early stages.

Symptoms include fatigue, numbness of hands and feet, memory loss, irritability, depression, gastrointestinal disorders and, in extreme cases, dementia. Barring the last, as the other symptoms are of a general nature and usually ignored, it becomes difficult to detect the deficiency. (Read more at:

I was lucky but it took two months and a hospital stay before my Croatian GP diagnosed my problem. Nobody else had thought of it. A raw spotty tongue, misdiagnosed as Lie Lumps,severe weight loss and increased anxiety should have been major clues to what was wrong with me but for many doctors this rang no bells.

It seems I have been B12 deficient for many years and the lack of it had left me with  serious problems. It has been a long voyage to get the amount of B12 I need back into my system. B12 is completely safe. It is a vitamin and can be bought over any chemists counter. According to the FDA there is no upper limit to the amount of B12 that can be taken as any  B12 the body does not need is removed in one's urine. Bought in bulk B12 costs pennies and it improves the quality of life for millions of people.

Yet in NZ and UK this vitamin is harder to obtain than heroin. It appears that the governments of both countries are not prepared to fund it and many poor who cannot afford to go private are refused. In the UK at the moment there are Bills before parliament to end this situation.

I am lucky. I can fund my own B12 injections and in fact now that my body has enough I can gradually ease off until I get the balance just right for me. Others are not so lucky.

So friends, take my advise and get a vitamin B12 blood test every few years to avoid deficiency and problems. I became very thin and anxious. Because it was left almost too late I shall always have problems but I am alive. I owe my life to my GP who although less than perfect at other times gave me this simple test.

NB Before you go for a B12 test it is important you are not taking any multi vitamin supplements which could effect the results. The Pernicious Anemia Society UK recommends that the level of B12 in the body should be around 450 points and that any result below that means one is deficient. However the Medical Fraternity in some countries who may for financial reasons not wish to fund at that level reduce the levels in UK to 200 and in NZ to 170. In my country one has to be very deficient to get the injections. I was around 150 which is 300 points below what is considered normal. 

The treatment of B12 Deficiency has not changed for 50 years and is now out of date. Everybody is different and has differing needs and with B12 one size does not fit all. I and many other need much more. Fortunately as B12 is so safe one can resort to subcutaneous patches and pills that go slowly into the blood stream but these are not as good as an injection.

The enlightened treatment is to medicate as required and I am lucky as I can do so. 

So if you have any of the symptoms listed above take a B12 test. It could save you from a life of misery.


  1. Nice post. I read total Post. It’s really nice. Thank you for sharing.........

    Vitamin b12

    1. Thank you. It is now a year since I wrote this post and my nervous system is back to normal. It takes months for the B12 to work after an intial burst but it has worked. Now i just take a tablet under the tongue when I feel it necessary and the occasional injection just to be sure.

      The tablets work well for me.

      Thank you again. Much appreciated.

  2. Hi, great read a good friend of mine has b12 deficiency and has to have injection, I take a couple of spray vitamins an adult multi vitamin and one for hey fever exo, both very good. I introduced him to the same company to buy b12 in spry form, since He has been using the spray his jabs are not so frequent and He looks and feels much better.

    Here is the link maybe it might help

    Good luck.

  3. For those struggling with B12 deficiency, I recently heard about a new oral prescription alternative to the injections called Eligen B12. Has anyone heard of it? I recently read that it works even if you don't have intrinsic factor (so even if you don't have normal gut absorption). Apparently it came out a month or two ago