A simple blood test can save your life (or vastly improve your health). It’s amazing how much we can learn about your health by properly analyzing a blood test. Numerous conditions can show up, such as infections, deficiencies, and even allergies, just by ordering the proper blood test.
One of the most important readings in blood tests is your ferritin levels. Ferritin indicates the amount of iron in your body’s organs and tissues. Unfortunately, this is not checked on routine blood tests; and just because someone does not have iron-deficiency anemia does not mean they have normal ferritin levels. “Normal” ferritin levels vary between different labs, but it can be a range of 10-300 ng/ml. However, my range for optimal ferritin test levels is 60-90 ng/ml.
So, why is this so important? Iron is essential to your health, but too little iron in your body can lead to many health issues. Too much of it can be toxic, causing organ damage, a long list of symptoms, and even death. When you have too little iron in your system, it can cause symptoms like body aches, fatigue, weakness, heart palpitations, low sex drive, irritability, restless leg syndrome, high blood pressure, depression and anxiety, headaches, hair loss, mood swings, dizziness, forgetfulness, and trouble concentrating.
When your iron levels are too high, referred to as “Hemochromatosis,” it can cause many of the exact same symptoms as too little iron. The biggest difference is that if you don’t treat the high iron levels, then over time, it can cause organ damage and eventually lead to things like cirrhosis of the liver, heart failure, and even death. Ferritin blood tests are something that we commonly include in the lab profiles we order for our patients. If you haven’t had your levels checked with a ferritin lab test, I would suggest you do.
If you have any questions, please give us a call, email, or contact us here. We would be happy to test ferritin levels, iron levels, and whatever else you need to be your best self.
Dr. Tom Rofrano