Crohn's Disease Forum » General IBD Discussion » Folate and ferritin deficiency

10-04-2017, 01:40 PM   #1
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Folate and ferritin deficiency

Hi folks,
Iím wondering how common folate and ferritin deficiencies are amongst the IBD community?

Iím in the process of having my symptoms explored by a GI dr and have recently had a blood test showing my folate is 3.1ug/L (3.89-26.80ug/L) and ferritin 11ug/L (15-150ug/L). Whilst I wasnít surprised about my low ferritin (it has been low for years) my low folate did surprise me as I eat a fairly varied diet with a reasonable amount of greens.

My platelet and lymphocyte count were also a little raised and MCHC was below range.
Has anyone had similar results and how common are these kind of results with IBD??

Thanks folks 😊
10-04-2017, 03:06 PM   #2
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I believe both deficiencies are pretty common in the IBD community. If you're having any sort of blood in your stool or bleeding in your digestive tract, that could account for the low ferritin. A few years ago, I had about a year straight of regular rectal bleeding, and both my iron and ferritin got pretty low (I think my ferritin was at 4). At that point, my GI put me on iron infusions, which very quickly got both numbers up into the normal range again. So if you aren't able to get your ferritin back up on your own, and if you're not able to take supplements (iron supplements can cause stomach upset for many people), then you may want to ask your GI about the possibility of having some iron infusions. I only needed 3 infusions, and then thankfully the bleeding alleviated shortly after that, so I've been good since that time. I don't have any experience personally with low folate, so I can't answer to that.
10-04-2017, 04:35 PM   #3
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Iíve had both, they were first found 4 years before I was diagnosed as I didnít have any other symptoms other than severe fatigue at that time. Of course this was swiftly put down to the deficiencies!

Once my platelets went sky high and I lost 3 stone (19 kg/42 pounds) very quickly without explanation I was swiftly referred lol.

They do still fluctuate, but I am one of the few who had minimal issues absorbing the pills and levels came back up to normal within a few months both times using them.

Iíve never been given the exact figures of my results, but I remember my GP saying my ferritin in particular was worryingly low.

Hope you get some answers soon x
Diagnosed severe Crohn's of the Duodenum, Terminal Ilium and Cecum.

Currently taking Azathioprine 100mg, Esomeprazole 40mg, B12 Injections and various supplements. Azathioprine failing so awaiting next steps
10-04-2017, 04:48 PM   #4
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Ferritin and folate can absolutely be low with IBD. Inflammation can prevent proper absorption of nutrients in the small intestine. When things are bad for me my hemoglobin goes down to 9 or so and my MCHC can also get really low.
10-09-2017, 02:42 AM   #5
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Due to chronic inflammation as well as side effects of chronically used medications, patients with IBD are also at increased risk of nutritional factor deficiencies, including iron, calcium, vitamin D, vitamin B12, folic acid, zinc, magnesium and vitamin A.
10-13-2017, 08:30 AM   #6
ChronicallyCrohns's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: Ohio
I also have low levels, fairly common in our community.

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