Why should I have a vitamin B12 blood test?

Vitamin B12 blood tests measure the level of vitamin B12 present in your blood. Vitamin B12 is important as it is involved in many basic bodily functions (e.g. brain health, blood cell production and nerve functioning). Low vitamin B12 levels can lead to a deterioration of brain function and also to serious nerve damage.

Your IPSA Medical clinic vitamin B12 test

At your IPSA Medical clinic, your IPSA Medical clinician might recommend a vitamin B12 test if you present at the clinic with symptoms like:

  • Dementia
  • A racing heart
  • Balance problems
  • Confusion
  • Tingling in your feet/hands
  • Weakness
  • A loss of appetite

Why might I require a vitamin B12 test?

Vegetarians and vegans have a higher risk for vitamin B12 deficiency as the major food sources for vitamin B12 are from animal products (e.g. fish, eggs, meat and dairy products).
You may also be at risk of vitamin B12 deficiency when taking certain medications (e.g. for acid reflux or for diabetes), as these can interfere with vitamin B12 levels.

What do my results from my IPSA vitamin B12 test mean?

Your IPSA Medical clinician will clearly explain your vitamin B12 results to you. Low and high vitamin B12 findings can both be problematic.
High vitamin B12 results can be indicative of diabetes, of liver disease or of certain types of leukaemia. If you are obese and/or do eat excessive amounts of meat, your vitamin B12 levels may also be high.
Low vitamin B12 results can suggest internal parasites, folic acid deficiency/vitamin B12 deficiency (anaemia) or hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid gland).

IPSA Medical’s vitamin B12 treatment

Your IPSA Medical clinician can give you injections (either one injection or a course of injections) of vitamin B12 if your level is found to be low. Your IPSA Medical physician will also advise repeating vitamin B12 blood testing at set intervals so as to ensure optimum vitamin B12 levels are both achieved and maintained.

How can I prevent vitamin B12 deficiency?

Vitamin B12 deficiencies are often linked to underlying health problems which do need to be treated. You can avoid vitamin B12 deficiency by taking certain preventative measures, especially if you are vegan/vegetarian (e.g. pay attention to your diet by eating plenty of food-based sources of vitamin B12: meat, milk, eggs, fish and poultry).
If you suspect your vitamin B12 level might be a problem, then call your nearest IPSA Medical clinic today for your same-day vitamin B12 test, or simply book online.

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