Vitamin B12 and Folate Blood Test Panel
This Vitamin B12 and Folate Blood Test Panel measure your vitamin B12 and folate levels to screen for a deficiency.
Order this Vitamin B12 and Folate panel to measure vitamin B12 and folate levels in the blood to screen for a deficiency that can cause anemia. Vitamin B12 and folate (vitamin B9) are essential B vitamins that your body requires to maintain overall health and functions. For example, adequate vitamin B12 and folate levels allow the body to sustain a healthy nervous system, stimulate red blood cell production, and form DNA. Conversely, vitamin B12 and folate deficiency can result in anemia, specifically macrocytic anemia. Macrocytic anemia is a blood condition that causes your bone marrow to make abnormally large red blood cells.
In addition to macrocytic anemia, a deficiency of vitamin B12 and folate can cause nervous system issues and other health problems such as:
- Pregnancy complications
- Tingling or prickling sensation (paraesthesia)
- Mouth ulcers
- Pale skin
- Loss of muscle strength
- Blurry vision
- Memory loss
- Impaired judgment
Several conditions can cause a deficiency of vitamin B12 or folates. These conditions include:
- Pernicious anemia (an autoimmune disease that targets healthy cells in your stomach, preventing the absorption of vitamin B12 from foods.)
- Other conditions that cause significant malnutrition and malabsorption (alcoholism, Crohn's disease, celiac disease, and cystic fibrosis)
- In some rare cases, a lack of these vitamins in your diet.
- Certain medicines (anticonvulsants and proton pump inhibitors)
Individuals with known B12 and folate deficiencies may also order this panel to help monitor the effectiveness of treatment, especially those who must have lifelong treatment. In addition, this panel can be ordered as a follow-up when large RBCs and a decreased hemoglobin concentration are found during a CBC test.
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