Holy moly!!!!! Ferritin skyrocketed!!!

Discussion in 'Success Stories' started by elisabeth, Jan 28, 2014.

  1. Ponygirl

    Ponygirl Member

    Thanks, dream1649. I'm hoping things will improve. I know it will be a long time before I know for sure. Keeping fingers crossed and will keep everyone posted.
  2. Ponygirl

    Ponygirl Member

    Today was a wash day...and I shed more than I wanted to see. I know this is a slow-go; but, still...it's depressing.
  3. Jodi09

    Jodi09 New Member

    Ju
    Just be careful and make sure to keep getting ferritin checks. I was diagnosed with aga last April and had a ferritin level of 13. I think a combo of stress, low iron, poor eating habits unmasked aga. I am 45 also which doesn't help. So anyways, been getting iron checked every 3 months. First check, it was 34, then 94, and today three months later, I got results of 178. These are dangerous levels. And all I have been doing is taking one ferrous sulfate tablet with vitamin c each morning. My level skyrocketed. I'm reading that too high levels can cause hairloss too and other complications as well. Hairloss is such a battle and is exhausting. It really sucks. Just watch your levels closely.i was watching and still managed to get it up that high.
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  4. elisabeth

    elisabeth Active Member

    BAD BAD BAD IDEA....HAD IRON OVERLOAD AND IT ALL BACKFIRED!!! please see my new post, I explained everything.
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  5. chestnut20

    chestnut20 New Member

    I've been following Elisabeth's story for a while now and have been dealing with TE for 2 years. The hair loss goes up and down and it is definitely related to low erum iron and ferritin and low vitamin D in my case. All other tests are always normal. My problem is that I have not been able to keep my ferritin above 40 because of heavy periods and because if I take more than 1 iron pill (109mg elemental iron) I have side-effects and my iron saturation goes up. However, there is definitely a positive response in my case when my levels of iron and D are up. I am now experimenting with adding yellow dock tea to help absorption and generally cleansing the liver to help raise the ferritin without overdosing on iron pills.

    Here is what has been happening to me, if it helps anyone compare numbers. I noticed profuse shedding in October 2012 but it probably had been happening for a month. All of a sudden the hair in the back was a lot less when I put it in a pony tail and then I noticed it in the shower and brushing. I've always shed a lot of hair but also had significant amount -- fine but a lot of it. Now all of a sudden, in 2-3 months about 30-40% of my hair was gone, mostly at the crown and on the sides, and now I believe it is more like 40-50% - and in the past year I've been losing a lot at the front line. My part is not wide at all - it is evenly diffused everywhere -- even in the back it is much thinner than it used to be. It still looks decent, because I had a lot to begin with, but I know the difference. I can't style it as I used to and I'm very worried about the loss in the font -- I have all these stray hairs right in the front. I never had a stable diagnosis either -- two dermatologists said AGA, 2 said TE. Looking back, I had a trigger or two -- in June I had a cold or virus - two days of high fever, which for me is extremely unusual - the doctor could not tell me what I had, I lost my voice for a week. In August I had a sun stroke and got my period a whole week early and it was even heavier than normal. My father has a lot of hair and my mother does not, but she also has chronic vit.D, fibormyalgia, has always been anemic all her life, and also hypothyroid issues.
    In December I got some bloodwork and it showed vit. D @ 27, iron 18% (low end is 15), hemoglobin at the low range. At that point I was reading stories online and came upon the ferritin connection, started supplementing with some ferrous sulfate, around 65 mg elemental iron a day, and took nettle tea and asked for a test. After a month I had my ferritin checked - it was 19 and my doctor said it was normal, since low range was 15, but since my saturation was low, she said to keep taking the sulfate. She also gave me 2000 IU of Vit.D to take per day. After 2 months of this my ferritin was 22 and vit. D was 29. I stopped listening to my doctor and supplemented with 5000 IU of vit. D and kept the iron sulfate and noticed some reduction in hair shed but it never filled up again. When this was happening and about a month before it started my hair at the crown had gotten very dry -- and I usually have oily hair - I need to wash every other day. The texture had improved in the spring and although the shedding was reduced and I always had small hairs growing, it never filled up. In may I checked my ferritin and it was still 22. In the summer I was under a lot of stress, traveled overseas twice, was looking for a new job, was not sleeping well, not taking my supplements regularly at all and in September my hair started falling a lot again. At that point I knew I was going to leave the U.S. in January to start a job in Europe, so I was happier about my life and resumed taking supplements more aggressively. Now I was taking along with the sulfate, also Floradix, so probably 150mg elemental/day and 10,000IU of vitamin D in drops. At the end of October 2013 I had my ferritin and D checked and they were both at 44. Hair loss was a bit more stable but still excessive for me and I shed a lot of very fine hairs, which I never had before the hair loss began. My primary care said I should stop the iron and take it only with my periods, because my iron saturation was high - 56 and the high end was 55 - meaning the iron circulating in your blood. I listened because I was worried about overdosing. I tested ferritin in the beginning of December together with the general bloodwork, and it was 34. 10 points down in a little over a month without supplements! I resumed the supplements, nettle tea, also yellow dock root tea, and noticed that my hair was thickening, I spent almost a month in Dec2013/Jan2014 in Arizona visiting my family, so probably getting adequate D, and left for Europe.
    I've had a lot of stress, insomnia and change of nutrition in the beginning and although I was taking what Elisabeth suggested - ferrous fumarate, but I was not doing it every day or taking it with Lysine. In April my hair started shedding more than normal, but still around 50 after washing and then more throughout the day. I did not test but kept taking iron more regularly. In July it had subsided and in August it was getting thicker, although still far from what I started out with - I think the most recovery I've had was still 30% less than original amount of hair. I was again under a lot of stress, traveling, not spending time outside, definitely not getting enough sun, although my mood was very positive most of the time because I am just happier with my life. In September it started shedding a lot again and I decided I need to check what it going on. Beginning of October I got a blood exam and Vtiamin D was 21 - almost deficient, iron serum was 106 (range 60-180), hemoglobin 12.3 (range 12-15.6), no ferritin. When I saw the doctor in the middle of October my hair was shedding 70-80 with washing and constantly during the day - I was definitely losing 150+ hairs/day. I got a prescription vitD of 20,000IU/day for 2 weeks and twice a week after that. I upped my ferrous fumarate to 2 pills of 109mg elemental iron a day with lysine and vit.C, and staying away from calcium, coffee, and tea. Breakfast was hard! After about 10 days of taking vit.D my hair shed reduced itself significantly - to about half, which is still 30-40 after washing and another 10 in the shower, and probably another 30 during the day. Given that before hair loss began I was shedding 15 with washing, this is a lot for me and I still keep shedding thin little hairs along with the longer thicker ones which are still there. I tested 2 weeks ago, so a month after upping my iron and taking the prescription vit.D. My vit.D was 63 (tripled!) and my ferritin was 41, my iron serum was 114 (60-180). I know that until I fix the ferritin hair loss won't improve. I had a trichogram done last month by a dermatologist who diagnosed me with TE and he said it is coming from the inside, however he could not tell me what is causing it -- the idea that ferritin of 41 with significant amount of iron supplementation is too low does not enter into their diagnosis calculations.
    My doctor gave me iron gluconate to try - 89mg/day with vit.C - dissolvable in water. I will keep taking it until I reach 70. I will re-test vit. D and ferritin at the end of January. I also notice that the hair shed fluctuates during the month with my period - which is the ultimate cause of this problem but I cannot do anything to fix it. I am turning 40 in a couple weeks.
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  6. elisabeth

    elisabeth Active Member

    Hi chestnut welcome to the board! Please see my brand new post regarding raising ferritin to " above 70" which is your goal...I also thought that was the magic number to reach and get beyond and within 3 weeks of my ferritin "skyrocketing" I lost it ALL. We may each have a magic number that changes with each person. For me, my danger zone seems to be ferritin ABOVE 70. I was perfect at 59.
    Also ferrous sulphate did nothing for me. All the best!
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  7. chestnut20

    chestnut20 New Member

    Thanks, Elisabeth. Probably for people who are used to having low iron, going fast to levels way above 100 is unhealthy. I think trying more natural methods like yellow dock root tea helps treat anemia better than the pills because it goes to the root of the problem -- poor metabolism of iron, perhaps too much estrogen in the liver. I will try this along with the ferrous gluconate, which is slightly less than the fumarate and will post results at the end of January.
    I got the results of my trichogram, which confirms TE - my frontal is normal 91% anagen to 9% telogen, whereas in the back (occipital) its 77% anagen to 23% telogen. Normal is between 85-95% anagen. It is obviously caused by nutritional imbalance -- it is very rare for women to lose more hair in the back than on the sides (whatever they call "frontal", because my forehead is receding and they took samples from back and side).
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  8. elisabeth

    elisabeth Active Member

    I have low iron with NO anemia...do you think my inability to store iron could be due to liver issues? if so, please explain further! what could be causing me not to metabolize all the red meat, beans, nuts that is consume? I am so happy and healthy other than this one issue of iron.
    Ponygirl likes this.
  9. chestnut20

    chestnut20 New Member

    From what I've read, iron metabolism depends on the liver, so whether the problem is not being able to store it (low ferritin) or storing too much (hemochromatosis), the cause is the same -- sluggish, overloaded liver. I suspect this is my issue with being unable to store iron as ferritin while there is excessive iron circulating in my blood on the tests because of iron supplements. Even if you stick to a relatively healthy diet, there are a lot of toxins in foods and it is good to cleanse the liver once in a while to optimize iron metabolism. I know when I was taking it last fall is when I saw most improvement with hair loss and ferritin absorption. I was also taking stinging nettle tea, which is another blood cleanser. Raw greens also help, especially chicory/dandelion.
    Here is some info on the yellow dock:
    http://www.digherbs.com/yellow-dock.html
    http://www.healthguidance.org/entry/17018/1/Yellow-Dock-Root-Benefits.html
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  10. elisabeth

    elisabeth Active Member

    I just did my blood today, I'll have the results tomorrow. I've been doing my famous cocktail one time every 3rd day. 2 weeks ago my ferritin was in the 80's which I believe is too high for me so I'm hoping this steady iron every 3 days will be just enough to keep me in the high 50's low 60's which I THINK AND HOPE is where I need to remain. This whole trial n error sucks! Because the only sign that it's not working for me is hair loss. I wish there was another warning sign. But I'm going to do liver cleanse as you suggested...it's so important and I have not done it for many years. One more thing to note is I had written that my only iron issue was hair loss but I forgot to mention again that 3 of my babies were born full term but teeny tiny weighing around 4.5 pounds. That must be a direct result of not enough iron getting to those babies . But they are all healthy and beautiful now...and getting bigger daily :)
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  11. elisabeth

    elisabeth Active Member

    and I just ordered LiverCleanse from Amazon, thank you for suggesting this :)
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  12. elisabeth

    elisabeth Active Member

    Pony girl, I also added ironsmart to my cocktail instead of the pills and that's around the time the tragedy happen so I'm staying away from that personally. But if something is working for you then keep doing it. I'm just such a wreck at having MY cocktail backfire on me when I was doing so great. Actually the cocktail was perfect it was me who screwed it up:(
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  13. Ponygirl

    Ponygirl Member

    Haven't been here for a few days, so I have a lot of catching up to do! Glad you're back and posting, Elizabeth. Going back now to read what happened~! Then, I'll be able to respond better. By the way, my name is Alice...meant to tell all of you that sooner!
  14. elisabeth

    elisabeth Active Member

    hey alice! nice to "meet" you :)
    just got my labs back...being on the every 3 day routine worked and my ferritin dropped to a safer zone for me (we think anyway! - trial n error girls)
    iron serum is 57, saturation 19, and ferritin is 72. my goal is to maintain it in the 60's with iron in the upper 40's to 50's and saturation around 15-17.
    why? because these were my labs when hair was wonderful!
    and today, right now, my hair is wonderful too....shedding is normal (less than 50 a day) and hair is shiny and thicker. PLEASE HAIR GODDESS, LET IT REMAIN SO!!
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  15. elisabeth

    elisabeth Active Member

    PS I am staying on the every 3rd day for 10 days and retesting/ if I go too low I will go to every other day and retest 10 days after that. I will retest every 2 weeks or so until I know the right "recipe" for me and it is stable like that for 3 months straight. at that time I will test every 8 weeks just to be absolutely certain. and WHEN that is stabilized for 1 full year I will test every 4-6 months. and I will do that FOREVER.
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  16. Ponygirl

    Ponygirl Member

    Hi, so nice to 'meet' you, too! This is so agonizingly frustrating, isn't it?! My first labs...when I presented to doc for first time on Sept. 30...came back as iron serum 61, saturation 19, and ferritin 26. I was in massive shedding phase by the time I got to that appointment. Was on your cocktail twice daily...and also added the IronSmart. When tested on November 20, my ferritin had risen to 57. She didn't pull a full iron profile, just ferritin, so I don't know where my serum and saturation levels are now. I'm supposed to go in right after Christmas for another lab. Then again in mid-February. I will continue to post updates as often as I can...not online every day. Elizabeth, I hope you will be back often, too! I have no idea what my 'number' should be. Trial and error...I hope not too much on the 'error' side! I've got to grow my hair back! :)
  17. Ponygirl

    Ponygirl Member

    I wish I could do the private lab as you suggested; however, the lab closest to me is still too far for me to drive with my schedule.
  18. elisabeth

    elisabeth Active Member

    By the way I'm posting all my lab updates and success under my "update" post from last month. Because I've got 3 active posts here all about my journey , I am all over the place with my updates! For anyone reading this for the first time I suggest reading my very first post on this forum " finally, no more hair loss" then go to my 2nd post of " holy moly ferritin skyrockets" and then read my 3rd post " I'm back major update". If you read all three you will have the total and complete picture! And the info that I have is really fascinating if I must say! I went from finding my cure after 14 years of constant daily hair loss to getting overly cocky believing I had all the answers to getting a smack in the face when my perfect plan backfired due to ferritin overload. Today I'm back to being cured but I'm humbled enough to know this may fail and I will be back to playing body chemistry detective again. My body, our bodies, are a real mystery. All I know for CERTAIN is my cocktail absolutely works miracles for me. I think, I PRAY, I found the right formula to keep my success this time around. I'm almost 45 and I went through all my 30's with fugged up looking hair and I am so done with that part of my life!! I'm looking forward to solving other problems that'll be coming my way, not hair loss. That's my vision for the rest of my life. I don't know exactly why they combination of ferrous fumarate, L Lysine and Vitamin C and wearing a copper bracelet work so very well for me but it does. If there's anyone out there with an understanding of body chemistry I would love to know but if I never do that's fine. So long as I have my hair I'm fine :)
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  19. elisabeth

    elisabeth Active Member

    good grief!!! just got my labs back...posted under my "hey girls im back with update".
    this is crazy :eek:
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  20. ghad7weyyuw

    ghad7weyyuw New Member

    You need

    iron, b12, and b9, in synergy

    and they must be active forms of b12 and b9

    50% of people have a gene that means they cannot utilise normal b12 and b9,
    (some people cannot absorb b6 either)

    and this makes them low in iron too. the solution is methycobalamin and methylfolate. for b6, you would need p5p instead.

    most b supplements are junk and cannot be absorbed.

    supplements that can help:
    thorne b complex (contains the proper forms of b12 and b9 folate and b6)
    ferrasorb (iron , b12, b9, in proper forms and in one capsule)
    vitamin c of choice
    lysine tablets/capsules

    I don't work for any company. It is just a realisation I have had after buying 20 different brands of b complexes. Several companies sell them , just look around and avoid any that have normal forms of b9 in them, and normal forms of b12
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2015