Vitamin B12

Dear Patient

You have been identified as having a low Vitamin B12 level in your blood on your latest blood test. There are a couple of reasons this could be the case, including a possible deficiency in your diet or a condition called Pernicious Anaemia. Pernicious Anaemia is a relatively common condition where the body’s immune system prevents the stomach from being able to absorb Vitamin B12 from the diet.

In order to work out the cause of your B12 deficiency, we would like you to have a blood test for Pernicious Anaemia. If this is positive, then you may need lifelong Vitamin B12 replacement in the form of an injection every 3 months here at Highcliffe Medical Centre to keep your B12 levels in the normal range.

In the meantime, while waiting for the results, you will need a short-term course of three B12 injections per week for two weeks to top up your levels.

Once you have had the course of injections and your blood test results have been received, you will have a telephone appointment with Mr Shafiq Mohamedtaqi (Clinical Pharmacist at Highcliffe Medical Centre) to explain the results and ongoing plan. Shafiq manages all our patients with B12 deficiency and has received extra training in this area. In most cases, patients will not require a consultation with a GP for this condition. If you have any questions, then Shafiq will be able to answer these during your telephone consultation. In a minority of cases, GP input may be required which can be easily arranged as necessary.

Actions you need to take:

  • Please call our reception team to arrange the following:
    1. Blood test (for Pernicious Anaemia)
    2. B12 injections - three per week for two weeks – with the Practice Nurse
    3. Telephone appointment with Shafiq Mohamedtaqi once your blood test results have been received and you have completed the course of injections

If you would like to read any further information, then please look on the NHS.uk website which has an excellent section on B12 deficiency.

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