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Forum Name: Hematology Topics

Question: Should I insist on another hematology appt?


 kanani - Fri Dec 24, 2004 10:35 pm

Some advice would be great. I am a military spouse and I am dealing with the military medical system which is at times hit or miss. I was sent to the hematologist back in August with an elevated platelet count of 573. Since then it leveled off at around 450 where it has been ever since (give or take 15). In October my iron level dipped to an 11 and the hematologist said that was why my platelet count was high. He gave me a three month supply of ferrex 150 and said I didn't need to come back. I have been feeling lousy and had blood work done the end of November and it was still hanging around at 11 with my platelet count staying the same. My latest blood work done 12-22 shows my iron is down to 5 and my platelet is still the same. My glucose was elevated 137, and I was slightly low on potassium. The doctor I saw asked me to redo the glucose (which I have done) to double check on diabetes, but didn't say anything much about my iron and my fatigue. I am so exhausted that I quit my job at the beginning of this month. I don't do anything but sleep when the kids are in school.

It is difficult to navigate the military medical system when each doctor I see is generally just doing a rotation. The doctor I saw in hematology isn't even there anymore. Is there anything else I can be doing for this at home? I get scared when I feel this tired because it reminds me of when I had post-eclampsia 4 years ago with the birth of my son. The fatigue and the headaches were not fun.

With the holiday season right now, I am tempted to just wait. I am unsure of how proactive I need to be in this situation.

Thanks,

Kanani
 Dr. Tamer Fouad - Sat Dec 25, 2004 4:22 am

User avatar Dear kanani,
Please specify the name of the iron test you are talking about with the exact results and any other results that came out with it. I would be more concerned about the latest results (12-22).
 kanani - Sun Dec 26, 2004 4:34 pm

Thank you for replying. On the printout it says Iron 22 with a normal range of 37-170. The other says iron saturation 5.3 with a normal range of 15-50.

Kanani
 Dr. Tamer Fouad - Sun Dec 26, 2004 5:39 pm

User avatar Dear kanani,
These tests denote iron deficiency anemia. The causes of iron deficiency are too little iron in the diet, poor absorption of iron by the body, and loss of blood (including from heavy menstrual bleeding). If you do not have obvious blood loss then you may need to be investigated for what is known as occult blood loss (e.g. in stools). A panel of investigations may be required to determine if there is anything underlying this anemia that is more serious.

The answer is Yes you should insist on another hematology appointment. Please keep us updated on the outcome of your visit.

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