Eating a nutritious diet, rich in vitamins is an important part of living a healthy lifestyle. Vitamin B12 is one of these essential vitamins that is needed to form red blood cells and DNA. It also plays a vital role in the function and development of brain and nerve cells.
Vitamin B12 deficiency can cause various symptoms such as headaches, fatigue, depression, and even cause mental impairment. That’s why it is important to check your B12 levels if advised by the doctor.
If you are looking for the best diagnostic center in Pune, Sunrise Diagnostic is a name you can always trust, where we provide various services related to health checkups.
What is a vitamin B12 test?
Vitamin B12 test measures the amount of one or more Vitamin B in blood or urine. Vitamin B12 is necessary for blood cell production, brain health, proper nerve functioning, and the production of DNA. There are various ways to test your vitamin B12 levels. People who are obese or eat a lot of meat also tend to have higher-than-normal levels and are at higher risk of liver disease, certain types of leukemia, or diabetes.
Identifying whether a person has a deficiency or a lower-than-normal level of B12 is the purpose of vitamin B12 testing. Doctors advise a vitamin B12 level along with other tests for diagnosing or monitoring certain health conditions.
Vitamin B12 deficiency is something you must pay attention to because it can lead to difficulties with brain function, nervous system, and other health-related conditions. Experts have estimated that up to 20% of older adults may be low in this vitamin. So, it’s important to check your levels if there are any signs that they are low.
Why would you need a vitamin B12 test?
The Vitamin B12 test is performed to:
- Diagnose anemia
- Diagnose numbness and pain caused by nerve damage
- Evaluate nutritional status
- Diagnose cognitive impairment
- Monitor the treatment for Vitamin B12
Vitamin B12 has to be monitored:
The ability to absorb vitamin B12 decreases with increasing age. The underlying cause is with increasing age adults often develop problems with the acids and stomach enzymes needed to absorb the vitamin B12. That is why vitamin B12 deficiency particularly affect older adults.
Developmental challenges among children:
If a breastfeeding mother has a deficiency of vitamin B12, her newborn can be at increased risk for neurological damage and developmental problems. Therefore, pregnant women may also be advised by their doctors to check their vitamin B12 levels.
The main health problem associated with poor B12 absorption is “pernicious anemia.” It is a condition in which the body can’t make enough healthy red blood cells because, it doesn’t have enough vitamin B12. Thus, for making healthy red blood cells and to keep the nervous system working the right way, our body needs a sufficient amount of vitamin B12.
Symptoms of Vitamin B12 deficiency include:
- Loss of appetite
- Sore mouth or tongue
- Difficulty maintaining balance
- Fast heartbeat
- Numbness and tingling in the hands and feet
- Poor memory
Risk factors for deficiency vitamin B12 in elderly people include:
- Low levels of stomach acid
- Medications that interfere with vitamin B12 absorption
- Stomach surgeries
- Conditions that cause poor absorption in the stomach or small intestine, such as Crohn’s disease.
High levels of Vitamin B12 may indicate:
- Kidney failure
- Liver disease
- Certain types of leukemia
Low levels of Vitamin B12 may indicate:
- Hyperthyroidism (high levels of thyroid)
- Worm infection
If a CBC test detects large red blood cells the doctor can order a vitamin B12 test. Vitamin B12 is usually measured at the same time as a folic acid test. The result of the Vitamin B12 test, which will be analyzed by experienced radiologists and phlebotomists will indicate whether you need a lifestyle change to improve the levels of these vitamins.
Ways to manage your B-12 levels:
Dietary changes are advised to manage B12 deficiency. Eating fewer animal products like meats, dairy, and seafood is important to manage B12 levels.
To increase your level of vitamin B12. Your treatment may include:
- Vitamin B-12 injection
- Daily vitamin B12 supplements
- Diet rich in vitamin B-12
- Dissolving tablet or liquid
- Nose gel or sprays
Vitamin B12 test vs. folate test:
In some cases, people have both vitamin B12 and folate deficiencies simultaneously, whether on the other hand, some people have low levels of only one nutrient.
Your doctor can order both of these tests together or separately by assessing your medical history and risk factors. Vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to serious health conditions. It’s important to test if there are any symptoms of low vitamin B12.
Preparation for Vitamin B12 test:
- A blood sample is required to test this vitamin.
- It is important to stay well hydrated.
- The blood drawing procedure is safe and painless. Make sure, you are taking your doctor’s advice before testing on whether fasting is required or not. Some medications can affect the results of the vitamin B12 test, so it is also advised to check that with the doctors.
Whether it is a vitamin B12 test or a full body health checkup, we are the right choice for various tests. Sunrise Diagnostic based in Kothrud has the best health checkup packages in Pune. Apart from having a team of expert pathologists, they ensure quality and hygiene in sample collection and high accuracy in results. Connect with us to know more about various services.