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Pernicious Anemia (Vitamin B-12 Deficiency) (cont.)

Pernicious Anemia (Vitamin B-12 Deficiency) Follow-up

The doctor will determine how often follow-up visits and blood tests are necessary for a patient's specific situation. As mentioned above, follow-up visits for the administration of vitamin B-12 injections are generally necessary.

Pernicious Anemia (Vitamin B-12 Deficiency) Prevention

Pernicious anemia develops as a result of an autoimmune process in the body and cannot be prevented. The effects of pernicious anemia can be prevented by replacing the B-12 in the body.

Other causes of vitamin B-12 deficiency, such as other gastrointestinal diseases and gastrointestinal surgery, are preventable only to the extent that these causes themselves are preventable. Vitamin B-12 deficiency in vegetarians can be prevented by the use of vitamin B-12 supplements. An oral dose of 100-200 micrograms (mcg) taken weekly should be sufficient.

Pernicious Anemia (Vitamin B-12 Deficiency) Outlook

Pernicious anemia is easily and effectively treated by the administration of vitamin B-12. Lifelong treatment is required.

If untreated, the neurological complications of pernicious anemia can be permanent. The incidence of stomach cancer in people with pernicious anemia is 2-3 times higher than in the general population of the same age.

Medically reviewed by Joseph Palermo, DO; American Osteopathic Board Certified Internal Medicine

REFERENCE:

eMedicine.com; "Pernicious Anemia."


Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 12/16/2015

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