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Date of last update: 10/12/2017.

Forum Name: Hematology Topics

Question: Unheard of? High Ferritin And TIBC With Normal Iron

 Clay201 - Fri Feb 27, 2009 3:10 am

I'm a 35 year old male. I've been sidelined since 1995 with a number of symptoms, including constant restlessness, involuntary movements, cervical dystonia, and fatigue.

Recent blood work shows:

Ferritin 427
TIBC 404
Iron 65
Saturation 16%

While I wait for my appointment with the hepatologist, I’d like to learn more about this condition. However, I’ve searched and can’t find any iron disorders that feature this particular combination: high ferritin along with high TIBC and normal iron. Do any exist? If so, could you tell me a bit about them?

Thank you.
 John Kenyon, CNA - Sun Mar 08, 2009 12:27 am

User avatar Hello --

High ferritin with normal TIBC and iron is not that unusual, actually, and often is indicative of infectious or alcohol-mediated liver disease, as well as rheumatoid inflammatory diseases, hypothyroidism and even sometimes type II diabetes. If any of these problems are already known to be present it would be the likely reason for the anomaly. If they are not known to be present then you should have the appropriate labs done to rule these out -- or in.

Hope this is helpful to you. Good luck with this.
 Clay201 - Sun Mar 08, 2009 3:51 pm

Thank you very much for the reply.

I have two sources of inflammation that I know about (but rest assured my doctors will be checking for others). One is the recently discovered "mild" hepatitis. The other is the dystonia in my neck and shoulders, which causes a lot of soreness and headaches and which I've had for 14 years. Could the latter really produce enough inflammation to elevate my ferritin? Even over time? If I understand you correctly, you're saying that the former is the more likely candidate anyway, right?

I've read about "The Anemia Of Chronic Disease," which is caused by inflammation, but was under the impression that it usually features low TIBC rather than high or normal. Also, I thought that all forms of anemia involved abnormal hemoglobin (where mine is normal). Did you have in mind a disorder other than AoCD or am I just misunderstanding the criteria?

Does the elevated TIBC/low saturation suggest that some parts of my body are not getting enough iron? If the ferritin returns to normal, would you expect the saturation to go up and the TIBC to come down?

(I hope that's not too many questions. And please don't hesitate to tell me I'm wrong about something; that's what I'm here for. Thanks again for the help.)


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