Quick Answer: What Does Vitamin B12 Mean In A Blood Test?

What happens when your vitamin B12 is low?

Not having enough B12 can lead to anemia, which means your body does not have enough red blood cells to do the job. This can make you feel weak and tired. Vitamin B12 deficiency can cause damage to your nerves and can affect memory and thinking.

What causes B12 to be low?

Pernicious anemia, which makes it hard for your body to absorb vitamin B12. Conditions that affect your small intestine, such as Crohn’s disease, celiac disease, bacterial growth, or a parasite. Immune system disorders, such as Graves’ disease or lupus.

What does B12 show up as on blood test?

Both are nutrients that cannot be produced in the body and must be supplied by the diet. Vitamin B12 and folate tests measure vitamin levels in the liquid portion of the blood (serum or plasma) to detect deficiencies. Sometimes the amount of folate inside red blood cells may also be measured.

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What should your B12 level be?

But a normal level of vitamin B12 in your bloodstream is generally between 190 and 950 picograms per milliliter (pg/mL). Between 200 to 300 pg/mL is considered borderline and your doctor may do more testing. Below 200 pg/mL is low and more testing is needed.

How long does it take for B12 supplements to work?

A response usually is seen within 48 to 72 hours, with brisk production of new red blood cells. Once B12 reserves reach normal levels, injections of vitamin B12 will be needed every one to three months to prevent symptoms from returning.

What medications should not be taken with B12?

Certain medications can decrease the absorption of vitamin B12, including: colchicine, metformin, extended-release potassium products, antibiotics (such as gentamicin, neomycin, tobramycin), anti-seizure medications (such as phenobarbital, phenytoin, primidone), medications to treat heartburn (such as H2 blockers

How long does B12 deficiency take to correct?

Recovery from vitamin B12 deficiency takes time and you may not experience any improvement during the first few months of treatment. Improvement may be gradual and may continue for up to six to 12 months.

What is the best B12 supplement?

The best B12 supplement

  • Best B12 supplements of 2020.
  • Jarrow Formulas’ Methyl B12: A previous favorite that’s held onto the top spot due to its special methylcobalamin formulation that’s easier to absorb than other types.

How can I raise my B12 levels fast?

To increase the amount of vitamin B12 in your diet, eat more of foods that contain it, such as:

  1. Beef, liver, and chicken.
  2. Fish and shellfish such as trout, salmon, tuna fish, and clams.
  3. Fortified breakfast cereal.
  4. Low-fat milk, yogurt, and cheese.
  5. Eggs.
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Should I be worried if my B12 is high?

Though daily high doses of B12 are unlikely to cause harm in most people, extremely high doses should be avoided unless prescribed by a healthcare professional. If you think you may be deficient in B12, speak with your doctor, who can recommend an appropriate treatment based on your level of deficiency.

What are the neurological symptoms of B12 deficiency?

A lack of vitamin B12 can cause neurological problems, which affect your nervous system, such as:

  • vision problems.
  • memory loss.
  • pins and needles (paraesthesia)
  • loss of physical co-ordination (ataxia), which can affect your whole body and cause difficulty speaking or walking.

Is folic acid a B12?

Vitamin B12 deficiency produces both an anaemia identical to that of folate deficiency but also causes irreversible damage to the central and peripheral nervous systems. Folic acid will correct the anaemia of vitamin B12 deficiency and so delay diagnosis but will not prevent progression to neurological damage.

Is 500 a good B12 level?

The vitamin B12 standard reference range is 200–700 pg/ml whereas the proposed optimal range is 500–1300 pg/ml [10]. Higher vitamin B12 ranges have been associated with increased cognitive function, and reflexes, decreased brain atrophy, confusion, weakness and depression [10].

What is normal level of vitamin B12 in elderly?

A serum vitamin B12 level between 200 pg/mL and 900 pg/mL is considered normal, but a threshold of 300 to 350 pg/mL is recognized as a marker for a desirable status in the elderly. The laboratory diagnosis is usually based on low serum vitamin B12 levels or elevated serum methylmalonic acid and homocysteine levels.

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Can you take too much B12?

Since B12 is a water-soluble vitamin, it’s generally considered safe, even at high doses. No Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL) has been established for B12, due to its low level of toxicity. UL refers to the maximum daily dose of a vitamin unlikely to cause adverse side effects in the general population.

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