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Old 01-18-2011, 08:22 PM
NYCGirlie NYCGirlie is offline
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Default How long does it take to raise iron feritin level??

I have recently been diagnosed with Chronic TE due to low feritin. I tested at 16 and my doctor said it has to be at least 70-100 to stop excessive sheds and get more regrowth. How long does this take?? I was prescribed Feosol (65mg iron) 2x a day. I am also trying to eat more iron (red meats, beans, dried apricots, etc). I have had shedding since summer2009 but have noticed a slight improvement in sheds since I just started taking iron. I know it wont be a quick fix, but anyone have success stories and any info on timeframe? Will it all grow back to normal?
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Old 01-19-2011, 07:47 PM
jbarks jbarks is offline
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Hi, NYCGirlie,

I am going through the same process as you. I noticed my hair loss several months ago, but I have a feeling that it has been gong on much longer. Anyway, my ferritin level is currently 25. Since I initially had it tested 6 weeks ago, it has gone up about 11 points. I've seen two hematologists, an endocrinologist, and a dermatologist. I saw one of the hematologists when I went home for Christmas, and she was very helpful. She prescribed me Ferrex 150 and told me to talk to my hematologist where I live. She told me I would probably have to go on a higher dose. However, here is where the irony occurs-- last week I had a follow up with my hematologist here (I, too, live in NYC). She was completely unhelpful and offered zero treatment options. I asked her about my prescription and possibly taking something higher. She said no. She told me to return to taking Hemaplex, which has 85 mg of iron. I told her I wanted to take something more and be as aggressive with my treatment as possible. She said no, and I just need to wait it out. I may not see any results until June. I have naturally fine hair, so my hair loss has been particularly devastating, and I told her that I wouldn't have any hair in June. She then gave me my most abhorred response: "Well, you can't tell." I hate that! I can tell, and that is all that matters. Needless to say I am not going back to her. I have an appointment with another hematologist on Monday. I am not a doctor, but I know that it is going to take more than 85mg of iron to raise my ferritin from 25 to 70 (at least).

Anyway, I apologize for the brief rant. It has been a frustrating experience with doctors. My endocrinologist has been the most helpful. The dermatologist was a complete waste of time.
In terms of a time table, it really depends on how aggressive your treatment is, and how quickly you can raise your levels. I've heard that the general time period is 6 months to a year until significant regrowth can be seen. My derm gave me Minoxidil to help speed up the process. But it's sitting in my desk drawer right now. I don't have any plans to use it.
In terms of going back to normal, I think it varies from person to person. My grandmother had hair loss as a result of iron deficiency anemia when she was in her twenties, and her hair fully came back. However, with some people, a majority of it grows back, but not all. I think you'll just have to see what happens.
What doctor did you see in New York? I'm looking for a backup in case this one is also a bust. It seems like your doctor actually took the time to address the hair loss issue. I wish you the best of luck!!
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Old 01-21-2011, 01:58 PM
NYCGirlie NYCGirlie is offline
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I understand the rant...it took me a few doctors to get an answer. And sadly it was in the bloodtest I had from the beginning, but no one knew how to read it. My doctor said I need to get to 70+ to see regrowth but I do have some regrowth and the shedding is getting better already. He wasnt 100% sure if it was just chronic TE due to low iron stores OR female pattern balding (or a combo of both). But I, optimistic that its chronic TE since its been a slow shedding that got me here. But I have hairlioss all over but receded temples, front hairline, wider part are most noiticeable (to me). Probably because thats what i first see. I'm not sure if this type of receding is characteristic of chronic TE from low iron (or if this is female pattern balding)????
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Old 02-06-2011, 04:21 AM
NYCGirlie NYCGirlie is offline
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Does anyone who has Chronic TE from low iron know if this is normal- been taking iron supplements for 1 month and now notice that less hair is shedding. But I see new, short hairs shedding along with the full grown long ones. Is that normal and a good sign or not?
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Old 02-07-2011, 01:14 AM
meggie meggie is offline
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Hi NYCGirlie,

I too had low iron and was put on Fergon. It took me approx. 2 months to see any improvement. The shedding gradually stopped and I, too, lost the short, new hairs along with the long ones. From what I understand this is normal and means that the hair follicle is still healing and producing hair. My ferritin level is 75 now and my hair has stopped shedding completely. Hang in there!!!!
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Old 02-15-2011, 01:20 AM
NYCGirlie NYCGirlie is offline
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Thanks Meggie. Good to know the small hairs shedding is a good sign. I hope I see improvement within 2 months like you did. I see some improvement of less shedding and new growth but the amount of hair shed is stll more than the regrowth. Did you experience thinning front hairline? Mine is all over but most noticeable to me in front. My doctor said my ferritin is very low so its definitely a factor for my hairloss- everything else is normal- but he said since low iron hairloss mimicks female pattern hair loss, it could be a combo. I'm hoping its just all low iron! How much iron do you take? I take Feosol (65mg elemental iron/325mg ferrous sulfate) twice a day but was going to ask about taking it three times a day. How long have you kept iron levels up? How long did it take for all yoru hair to regrow back to normal? My dr says 6 month to a year
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Old 02-18-2011, 08:45 PM
meggie meggie is offline
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Hi NYCGirlie,

I take Fergon 27 mg. and I only take it a few times a week now that my hair has stopped shedding and is growing back in. I also eat spinach a few times a week and cook in a cast iron skillet that leaches iron into the food. I had a lot of shedding all over the head but especially on the top and sides. It has taken me approx. 1 year to get back to normal. I stopped shedding completely in January 2011 and my hair is slowly growing back in and staying there. I haven't had my iron levels checked in a few months but have a dr's appt. on 3/15 and hopefully will find out then. I have been on iron for 6 months now. It does take time for everything to start working normally again but since you have small hairs growing in that is an excellent sign that the follicules are working. I was so excited when I parted my hair and finally saw these little hairs poking up. Keep the faith and eat healthy and try not to stress over it. God Bless.
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Old 03-15-2011, 09:49 PM
NYCGirlie NYCGirlie is offline
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I have been taking 2 iron pills a day (as presribed by doctor) for 2 months. I have been taking blackstrap molasses, eating iron rich foods, and slowed down my workouts so I don't burn off too much iron. I just got retested and my ferritin only went up 12 points. Is this normal? Seems SLOW! At this rate, it will take FOREVER to get to 70-100 range for hair regrowth
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Old 05-10-2011, 08:53 AM
linzineedshelp linzineedshelp is offline
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hi, i am suffering hair loss due to low iron and also possibly postpartum hair loss too.my doctor said it could be a combination of the two.
i too am losing most hair from the front and front sides, very upsetting and noticable to me.itsnt it just the worst!!!!
i had my blood tested a couple weeks ago and my ferritin is 8! i have been taking iron for just more than a week and i am hoping to at least see an improvement soon? has anyone had a quick result? (feeling as hopefull as i can right now)
i was prescribed ferrous fumarate 210mg/68mg elemental iron, three times a day.
after a week of this and revisiting my doctor she agreed to put me on the maximum dose for the quickets result.
i now take 420 mg/136mg elemental iron, three times a day.
i just hope i see some improvement soon.its getting me down so much.
has anyone been taking a dose like this?

i also think i have some little hairs growing in, i noticed them yesterday but wondering if the were there before and i hadnt noticed.they are along the front of my hair line and sticking up about 1cm long.

hope for some replies/shared experiences.

love to you all xxx
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Old 05-17-2011, 08:49 AM
newmom newmom is offline
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Hi Linzi!
after the hair stopped shedding, when did you start seeing regrowth? did you hair go back to its normal state? how long did the shedding last and what was it triggered by?
thank you!
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