What this test shows
Vitamin B12 and folic acid levels in the blood are assessed. Anaemia can stem from a deficiency in iron, which can result from poor absorption or low dietary intake, increased iron requirement which may arise during growth or menstruation, and excessive blood loss which could occur with injury or surgery. Vitamin B12 is also needed to prevent anaemia – it works with folic acid to regulate the formation of red blood cells, and helps the body utilise iron.
Who this test is for
This test is helpful for patients who may have symptoms of anaemia, but where iron and ferritin levels are not abnormal. It is also helpful for patients with restricted eating patterns eg vegan and vegetarian diets, as these can contribute to deficiency. Symptoms of aneamia include pale skin, brittle nails, sore mouth/tongue, hair loss/poor growth, coldness in extremities, weakness, poor concentration, fatigue, headache, depression, constipation, irritability, dizziness and loss of appetite.
Sample type: Blood – you will need to arrange to attend one of our phlebotomy clinics to get a blood draw; click here to find your nearest clinic, surgery or hospital offering this service.
Turnaround time: 10 days