Patient Comments: Pernicious Anemia - Symptoms

The symptoms of pernicious anemia can vary greatly from patient to patient. What were your symptoms at the onset of your disease?

Comment from: Lolac, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: April 11

I"ve had severe reaction to coldness, muscle pain, extreme fatigue, lack of concentration, pain in arms which feels like nerve damage and more recently dizziness. I got B12 checked which showed 164, the general physician said although it was low he didn"t feel the need to treat it as the symptoms were attributed to another medication I take for ulcerative colitis and arthritis. I explained I had experienced these symptoms before I began the medication. Having read many case studies on the pernicious anemia site I"m convinced that is the problem. I am only 37 and my quality of life is terrible, I"m so tired and this is not good as I"m a mother of a two year old.

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Comment from: jon, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: March 04

I was having difficulty making decisions and was somewhat confused because of pernicious anemia.

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Comment from: Katie, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: October 24

I was diagnosed with pernicious anemia in my late forties. I was walking with a friend and could barely walk up a slight slope without sitting on a wall for a rest. I had felt tired at times and tingling in my feet and hands sometimes but I was a busy person so just thought I needed to slow down a bit. However that day worried me as I had never been that tired before. My general physician checked my reflexes which were okay and decided to take a blood sample. She sent for me a few days later to do some more tests and found I had a low B12 level so ended up being diagnosed with pernicious anemia. When I saw the specialist, he took one look at me and said I had all the classic symptoms before he even diagnosed me! Once I learned more about it I realized I may have had it for years without knowing! I had low blood count especially after giving birth to my two daughters and I also had 4 miscarriages at 3 months each time, and could have no more children. There were other times I was ill not knowing what was wrong, I had loss of balance, etc.

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Comment from: christopher, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: October 15

I am a male, 69 years old, and was diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in 2010. I could hardly do anything that needed effort due to my breathing. I had numerous things going wrong, e.g., dizziness, slurred speech, tingling fingers, and a very sore tongue. Everything was COPD I was told. It wasn't till I went to Greece in 2013, I collapsed and rushed to hospital where I required 5 units of blood, I was told I had severe pernicious anemia and had been severely neglected for about 3 years. I had very little B12 in my body and my hemoglobin level was 4.4 - severely dangerous. Now I am home and being treated properly my COPD has magically gone. I get short of breath sometimes but I know now its caused by pernicious anemia.

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Published: August 07

I started having severe abdominal cramping two nights ago and which was preceded by constipation for two days. When I woke up the following more of the beginning of the cramping I felt OK, but then by the afternoon I ate lunch and started having severe diarrhea. Now the cramping has been going on for two days and I can't keep anything in my stomach. I have been diagnosed with IBS in the past along with anemia, but with my IBS I don't normally have the cramping.

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Comment from: MightyWeak, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: August 25

I am 44 years old and have just been diagnosed with pernicious anemia. My B12 level was at the bottom of the barrel on the chart on my blood test. My symptoms began vaguely but then quickly got worse as time went on. I am extremely fatigued and my muscles hurt. I have heart palpitations and shortness of breath easily. Mental confusion is a huge symptom for me. I have begun taking B12 injections one time per week. I'm on my third day with it, and I am beginning to see a slight improvement. Thank goodness!

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Published: August 25

I was diagnosed with pernicious anemia about five years ago. I was frequently treated for an iron deficiency before I was diagnosed. My symptoms started several years before my diagnosis. I had severe memory loss by age 26. I had tingling in my hands and feet. I had loss of pigmentation, confusion, tiredness, and personality changes. I had frequent visits to my physician and neurologists with no success. Eventually, a rookie doctor checked my B12 levels and found them to be extremely low. So, I was started on B12 shots immediately. It took a while for most symptoms to decrease. I still have memory loss with significant bouts of confusion. The tingling in my hands and feet has subsided. I've lost interest in eating meat, including fish. I am now a vegetarian.

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Patient Comments

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Pernicious Anemia - Treatments Question: What was the effective treatment for you pernicious anemia?
Pernicious Anemia - Share Your Experience Question: What was the cause of your megaloblastic (pernicious) anemia? Please share your experience.
Pernicious Anemia - Causes Question: Was there an underlying condition that caused your pernicious anemia?

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