I’ve been feeling really washed out the past couple of months and my get up and go has got up and gone. Both ME and EDS cause “fatigue” but I’ve had both for so long that I know what that exhaustion feels like and my current waffy-ness feels different. I’ve also been dizzy……a lot. I do suffer from dizziness as part of my existing conditions, but only for the odd day now and then and it’s usually so severe I can’t get out of bed. My current dizziness is milder but ever present and each time I turn my head the world tilts slightly on its axis. Plus I’m not sleeping. I’ve had insomnia for over 2 decades but again this feels different and I just have a niggle that “summat’s up”.
Of course I am peri-menopausal and fatigue, dizziness and insomnia are simply part of the bag for many women. But then so is anaemia especially if your periods are heavy, and mine are definitely heavier than they used to be. There are various types of anaemia, but in menstruating women iron deficiency anaemia is the most common so I made an appointment to see the nurse today to get my bloods checked.
I have just about every risk factor for anaemia going:
Any menstruating woman can be at risk from anaemia, particularly if she has heavy periods.
I’m not just bleeding from my uterus every month, I’m also bleeding into my pelvic cavity because I have endometriosis.
Anaemia is the most common issue affecting red blood cells in MCAS patients. See Lisa’s excellent post written on this issue over at Mastattack.org
Any type of inflammatory stomach or intestinal disorder can cause anaemia, eg. gastritis, ulcers, diverticulitis, crohn’s disease, colitis, coeliac disease, GERD (ie acid reflux).
5. Drugs used to treat GERD
PPIs, H2 blockers and antacids can all interfere with iron absorption and I have been swigging Gaviscon and Rennies recently like they’re going out of fashion on top of taking an H2 antihistamine.
I’ve been pesco-vegetarian for nearly 30 years. Before getting Histamine Intolerance I was very careful to eat a wide range of high iron vegetarian foods but since getting HIT and having to eat low histamine I’ve had to remove many of these from my diet, eg. spinach, soya beans, kidney beans, dried fruit, cashew nuts.
Diet deserves special mention. People with ME, EDS, HIT and/or mast cell diseases are often on restricted diets of one kind or another. Here in the UK we hardly ever get to see a Dietician, so are left to try and work out our food issues alone. We often don’t have the skills or knowledge to decide if we’re eating enough of the right foods to give us all the vitamins and minerals we need, so it’s really important to have our bloods checked once a year just to make sure we’re not deficient (I was shocked to learn today that I hadn’t had a full blood work up since 2014 despite all the various issues I’ve had in the past year or two!).
I won’t get my results back until early next week, so I’ll keep you posted. For those of a religious disposition please pray I’m not anaemic and don’t need iron tablets. My poop is the only thing in my entire digestive tract which is currently normal so the last thing I need is to not be able to go-potty for days on end! 😉