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Low ferritin: what to do when the reference value is lower than normal?

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What is low ferritin due to? Let's see the causes and symptoms, as well as the reference values ​​that represent a wake-up call.

Low ferritin, as well as high ferritin, suggests that something is wrong. The underlying problems are different and may indicate a more or less worrying clinical picture. Let's see what are the symptoms and normal reference values , as well as the treatments recommended by doctors after such a diagnosis.

Low ferritin: causes and symptoms

Iron-protein complex present in all tissues, especially in the liver, spleen, bone marrow and skeletal muscles, low ferritin is a wake-up call that should never be underestimated. It can, in fact, indicate an important pathology and lead to the development of anemia. Among the most common causes are: iron deficiency, chronic hemolytic anemia, nutritional deficiencies and reduced absorption, bleeding (such as heavy menstrual flow, bleeding hemorrhoids and nosebleeds), pregnancy and rheumatoid arthritis.

Low ferritin has clear symptoms : chronic fatigue, excessive fatigue even with little effort, paleness, cold hands and feet, weak nails and hair, severe headaches, loss of appetite or anorexia, irritability and lack of concentration.

To establish low ferritin and normal iron it is necessary to rely on these reference values : 20-120 nanograms / mL (20-120 micrograms / L) in women and 20-200 nanograms / mL (20-200 micrograms / L) in men. Below these values ​​means that there is something wrong.

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Low ferritin: what to do?

In case of hypoferritinemia, the doctor will recommend the most appropriate treatment based on the triggering cause. Most likely, the specialist will also indicate an ad hoc meal plan, mostly made up of foods rich in iron , such as: meat, legumes, fish, molluscs, crustaceans and dried and fresh fruit. In addition, he may also prescribe iron supplements. To find out if the ferritin values ​​are normal or not, a simple blood test is enough.

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