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Old 02-23-2021, 01:12 PM
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Low Iron; Low White Blood Count & NSAIDs

After noticing my white count was persistently low/borderline low over 3 separate blood tests over the course of a year, I was referred to a hematologist. They have effectively ruled out cancer, which was my big concern, but what was the cause of the low white count? Well, due to increased aches and pains, I had been taking prescription Naprosyn twice a day over the last year. Hematologist told me that pretty much all NSAIDs will lower the white count. Who knew? So a month ago as soon as I learned that, I stopped all NSAIDs. My white count is still low normal, but at least it's in the normal range and no longer low or borderline. WBC count increased approximately 33% in the last 30 days.

But of course now I'm dealing with aches and pains for which I've been using Voltaren cream, which was recommended by the hematologist. Although Voltaren is a NSAID, the amount your body absorbs is supposedly negligible. I'm not so sure about that, as a few years ago I was prescribed Voltaren in pill form, and it gave me such blinding headaches that I stopped taking it after only 2 days. With the cream, I definitely have headaches again, but maybe about 10% of what they were with the pills. Doctors really don't have any other recommendations for my aches and pains. I would recommend the Voltaren cream as it does seem to be effective as topical pain relief. If anyone has some recommendations for other non-NSAID pain relief, please feel free to comment.

During my blood workup, on the last test my iron was tested for the first time in years. It was low. Not anemic-low, but close to it. I've been started on iron supplements. I've done tons of searches on iron deficiencies and AAS, finding nothing regarding potential links. Wondering if I missed something, please feel free to chime in if you can shed light on this. Doing research on iron deficiencies, I was amazed at all the potential blood implications due to low iron. There are also a ton of physical complaints related to low iron, but I had no symptoms whatsoever.

Regarding the iron, I eat a pretty well-balanced diet, but my red meat intake is next to nothing. Maybe once a week, twice a week at most. However, I do have at least a little spinach on most days. Hematologist told me that while spinach has iron, it's really hard for the body to absorb it from spinach during digestion. She said red meat is a much better source, but stopped short of recommending that I up my red meat intake, preferring the iron supplements instead.
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Old 02-23-2021, 01:54 PM
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Why did your doctor not prescribe you meloxicam? The impact on blood and organs is much less severe than naproxen and it works better.
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Old 02-23-2021, 07:49 PM
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Why did your doctor not prescribe you meloxicam? The impact on blood and organs is much less severe than naproxen and it works better.
Don't know, but since meloxicam in a NSAID, I suspect she wanted me off all NSAIDs and hopefully might white count even higher before considering switching to something with less impact (such as possibly meloxicam). Naprosyn has always worked very well for me in the past.

I have another appointment in 30 days. Let's see what's going on with my white count then. If it's still low normal, I'm not even gonna bring it up, but if it's mid-range normal, I will definitely ask if meloxicam might be an option.

Thanks for the suggestion.
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Old 02-24-2021, 10:42 AM
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fck, as my grandma always said, no good to get old

I would think 2 x's a week red meat would be fine if that is what u like
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Old 02-24-2021, 11:23 AM
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i *love* red meat. Nothing like a nice steak or tritip. Not sure why she preferred the supplements over increasing red meat. My cholesterol is always freakishly low.....if my diet solely consisted of eggs and red meat you'd barely see any spike at all. I am not a fan of saturated fat and she knows I'm active and eat pretty clean, but I suggested myself about upping my red meat intake (I'd happily eat an In-N-Out 3x3 Animal Style every other day!), and she didn't roll with it. I'll see how I do on the iron supplements, which can cause some stomach discomfort and constipation. Apparently your body stores iron for slow release, and it's a matter of me replenishing my very diminished supply and then perhaps I can stop the supplements and be more conscious of the iron I get in my diet.
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Old 02-24-2021, 12:19 PM
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There are iron injections but not something you want to do blindly because there are toxic levels. You might ask her about the injections, which could get you in the normal range quickly.
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Old 02-24-2021, 01:05 PM
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i *love* red meat. Nothing like a nice steak or tritip. Not sure why she preferred the supplements over increasing red meat. My cholesterol is always freakishly low.....if my diet solely consisted of eggs and red meat you'd barely see any spike at all. I am not a fan of saturated fat and she knows I'm active and eat pretty clean, but I suggested myself about upping my red meat intake (I'd happily eat an In-N-Out 3x3 Animal Style every other day!), and she didn't roll with it. I'll see how I do on the iron supplements, which can cause some stomach discomfort and constipation. Apparently your body stores iron for slow release, and it's a matter of me replenishing my very diminished supply and then perhaps I can stop the supplements and be more conscious of the iron I get in my diet.
Her dismissal of red meat is nothing more than the stigma associated with it. Like you, my blood cholesterol is perfect. My doctor stated I must not eat any red meat. I told her I eat red meat 10-14 times a week and she could not believe it. I explained to her I can eat all the red meat I want if I do not eat a bunch of junk with it. Hell I did keto for six months eating red meat 20-30 times a week and my cholesterol barely moved.

These are the same doctors that say you are obese if your BMI is high despite being 12% BF.
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