Still Looking for Answers: Vitamin B12 Deficiency?
Last updated: June 2023
A few months ago, I started a new journey with the doctor. I believed very strongly that my hives were related to my B12 deficiency. The conversation with the doctor in combination with my logical thinking gave me so much hope that I could already see it completely: no more chronic hives thanks to maintaining my B12.
Our bodies and vitamin B12
The human body needs vitamin B12 to make red blood cells, nerves, DNA, and carry out other functions. The average adult should get 2.4 micrograms a day. Like most vitamins, B12 can't be made by the body. Instead, it must be gotten from food or supplements.1
Vitamin B12 deficiency can be slow to develop, causing symptoms to appear gradually and intensify over time. It can also come on relatively quickly. Given the array of symptoms a vitamin B12 deficiency can cause, the condition can be overlooked or confused with something else.1
Vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms may include:1
- Strange sensations, numbness, or tingling in the hands, legs, or feet
- Difficulty walking (staggering, balance problems)
- Swollen, inflamed tongue
- Difficulty thinking and reasoning (cognitive difficulties), or memory loss
While an experienced physician may notice the symptoms and be able to detect a vitamin B12 deficiency with a good interview and physical exam, a blood test is needed to confirm the condition.1
Why did I believe that there might be a link between B12 deficiency and my hives? I have often indicated that I feel extremely tired when I have such an outburst of the hives. It's an indescribable feeling and I was extremely desperate to find a solution.
My reasonings seemed logical, and the doctor agreed to investigate this together. After 3 weeks I was allowed to go back and we would discuss the lab results. Unfortunately, my B12 deficiency is not the cause of my chronic hives.
I was extremely disappointed, because I wanted a solution so badly. The doctor saw the disappointment and suggested that I go to a new allergist so that I could do all the tests again. Do everything all over again, and hope that a new allergist can find the cause. At first, I obediently agreed, and I made my appointment so that I could start the journey again.
But as the day approached, I noticed that there was absolutely no point in telling the whole story all over again and convincing someone that the hives really bothered me. 3 days before the appointment I called the allergist to cancel because I didn't have the energy for it.
What's next? I have no idea what other options are out there. I read a lot and I keep looking for answers.
How well do you feel you manage your chronic hives?