I have anemia. I’m still not sure if it’s because of the Crohn’s, or just exacerbated by it – but I have severe anemia. As in, when I went to the hospital (the trip that led to the Crohn’s diagnosis) my iron was so low that they had no idea how I was conscious.
That first trip I had an infusion of iron (and blood!) and started taking iron pills. Daily. Then, for a period of time I was taking liquid iron (which is disgusting and stained my teeth), but I’d finally made it back into a normal range.
Then I went to the hospital in January. And with that flare-up, I lost a lot of blood, and thus… a lot of iron. So I’ve been gradually building it back up.
I had a blood draw last week (it’s my 7th blood draw of the year, 12 if you include the hospital stay), and went to my doctor today – and voila! My hemoglobin level is .1 under normal range, but it was a vast improvement – and my iron levels are normal.
It’s huge, really. I think that a big part of it is that I’ve been so very careful about keeping my Crohns from flaring up – it means I absorb more nutrients and lose less blood. So diet and exercise really does work!
Though, as my fantastic boss put it… the downside is that I’m more vulnerable to Magneto now.