Vitamin B-12 Deficiency Symptoms

Not all of these symptoms need to be present for a diagnosis of vitamin B-12 deficiency – in fact, many people only have two or three.  If you suspect you have vitamin B-12 deficiency, ask your doctor for a blood and urine test – blood levels may not be accurate in all cases.

Neurological Symptoms:

  • Numbness or tingling in the hands and feet.
  • Problems coordinating your body movements (ataxia).
  • Impaired reflexes.
  • Problems walking (gait disturbances).
  • Impaired vibration perception.
  • Closing your eyes makes you very unsteady (positive Romberg’s test).
  • Extending your big toe while curling the rest when your sole is tickled (Babinski’s sign).
  • Sudden electricity-like shocks down the spine when moving your head.
  • Degraded vision (optic nerve damage).

Pscyhiatric Symptoms:

  • Difficulty concentrating.
  • Confusion.
  • Irritability.
  • Impaired memory / memory loss.
  • Dementia.
  • Depression.
  • Major personality changes.
  • Psychosis/delusions.

Anemic Symptoms:

  • Fatigue.
  • Apathy.
  • Difficulty breathing during exertion.

Other Symptoms:

  • Aversion to meat (the only significant dietary source of vitamin B12).
  • Impotence.
  • Incontinence / loss of bladder control.
  • Infertility.
  • White patches of skin (vitiligo).
  • Diarrhea.
  • Hair loss.

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