Vitamin B12 or folate deficiency anaemia can cause a wide range of symptoms. These usually develop gradually, but can worsen if the condition goes untreated.
Anaemia is where you have fewer red blood cells than normal or you have an abnormally low amount of a substance called haemoglobin in each red blood cell.
General symptoms of anaemia may include:
If you have anaemia caused by a vitamin B12 deficiency, you may have other symptoms, such as:
Some of these symptoms can also happen in people who have a vitamin B12 deficiency but have not developed anaemia.
Additional symptoms in people with anaemia caused by a folate deficiency can include:
See a GP if you're experiencing symptoms of vitamin B12 or folate deficiency anaemia.
These conditions can often be diagnosed based on your symptoms and the results of a blood test.
It's important for vitamin B12 or folate deficiency anaemia to be diagnosed and treated as soon as possible.
Although many of the symptoms improve with treatment, some problems caused by the condition can be irreversible if left untreated.
The longer the condition goes untreated, the higher the chance of permanent damage.
Page last reviewed: Mon May 2022 Next review due: Wed Feb 2020