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Feel very unwell, exhausted, and night sweats constantly. Had anemia, high cholesterol. Whats wrong?

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I am a 44 year old Uk based female, who was reasonably fit and active, (until recently) with three young children.

Just over a year ago I started to feel very unwell, exhausted, and suffered severe night sweats constantly. I also lost my appetite, but felt very bloated and unwell. I was diagmosed with pernicious anaemia and started on B12 shots. After a while I started to feel much better. But a few months later i started to go downhill again. I have been having various muscle aches, nerve pains and stiffness for several months now. My wrists and hands in particular have been painful, slight swelling and weak. I have had continuous pain in my right hip for months, although the left seems unaffected. I also get pains in my knees, feet, elbows, tail bone and occasionally my jaw. If I stand, or climb stairs, my thigh muscle start to really hurt and I feel weak and shaky.

I also get mad itching, periods of muscles twiching all over (including my stomach). But the worst is extreme tiredness/exhaustion.

These symptoms all seem to come and go, and rotate around the body. AT best, i feel tired with the odd ache and pain. At worst, I feel like I have been hit by a car!

I have had numerous blood tests, including anaemia, thyroid, celiac, etc but so far no diagnosis. In the last year I have been diagnosed and treated for perncious anaemia and my cholestrol has risen (a year ago it was fine).

Any advice gratefully received. Thank you

Posted Mon, 25 Feb 2013 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Rahul Kumar 2 hours later
Hello dear,

Thanks for the elaborate history given by you.

All the symptoms which you have like tiredness, fatigue, aches etc. point towards chronic fatigue syndrome.

First of all you must understand perinicious anaemia is not just anaemia, as we see with iron deficiency. It is infact an autoimmune disorder, which is associated with other systemic problems. This is not curable but can be controlled. I suggest you must take monthly vitamin B 12 injections life time. Stopping these injections may also cause the symptoms mentioned by you.

Another very important point to remember is that, usually perinicious anaemia is also associated with iron deficiency anaemia and folate deficiency. It is important to supplement with Iron capsule and good health.

Thank you.
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Follow-up: Feel very unwell, exhausted, and night sweats constantly. Had anemia, high cholesterol. Whats wrong? 13 hours later
As I metioned previously, I am being treated for B12 deficiency and receiving regular B12 shots now for life. I have my B12 and Iron/folate levels monitored regularly and these are all within normal range at present.

The muscles aches, neuropathic pains etc have developed in a second phase, after I started on the B12 shots.

I omitted to mention previously that I also on occasion suffer migraine type headaches which seem to centre over my right eye, which last for 1-3 days (this is new - I have never suffered headaches). I sometimes see large flashing white rings before both eyes, particularly at night. I have had my eyes tested but all is normal.

I am not suffering any depressional and am a generally hapy soul who enjoys life and socialising, cycling, camping and walking. I find it vry frustrating when my body doest want to cooperate and soedays the pain is unbearable and prevents me from working, driving, living!
Answered by Dr. Rahul Kumar 3 hours later

Thanks for the follow up query.

It is good to know that your vitamin levels are normal and you are taking iron supplements as well.

In the previous reply I forgot to mention that apart from anaemia the second most commonest manifestation of pernicious anaemia is neuropathy, and sad to say it may progress even on treatment.

The numbness and aches what you are having are due to neuropathy.

The progression can be halted by using higher doses of Vitamin B12. Please discuss this issue with your treating physician.

Regarding your migraine problem, it might not be related to pernicious anaemia. Although you see floaters in front of eye there is no problem in eye, it is a problem of vessel that is supplying blood to brain. So eye test will be essentially normal.

Unfortunately there is no test to prove migraine. The problem of vessels is transient episode. It goes off with the attack. If it is troubling you much, medication must be started to control the attacks or prevent them.

Thank you.
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