Vitamin B12 is a nutrient that helps to keep your nerves and blood cells healthy. Our bodies don’t make Vitamin B12, it is obtained from foods such as meat, fish, milk and eggs. You may have a deficiency if you are vegan, don’t eat enough B12 rich food, or if you have other health conditions which mean you are unable to absorb it properly, such as pernicious anaemia.
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What is the Vitamin B12 Injection?: The Vitamin B12 injection is an effective way to treat a deficiency. There is only one type of vitamin B12 injection available in the UK, known as hydroxocobalamin. Vitamin B12 tablets, also known as cyanocobalamin, can be bought over the counter from pharmacies or health stores, but are not as effective as the injection.
- Who should get the injection?: If you do not already receive the B12 injection, you must be tested for a deficiency before we can treat you. This is to make sure that you are suitable for the injection.
- How can I get the Vitamin B12 test?: If you have symptoms of Vitamin B12 Deficiency you can have a test from your GP or privately have a test for Vitamin B12, Folate and Intrinsic Factor Antibodies (IFAs). Order your test kits from Superdrug Online Doctor. You will need to bring the results of the test to your appointment.
- I have already started Vitamin B12 therapy – can I get my injection here? Yes! If you contact our Customer Service Team they will be able to send you a form to have completed by your GP to confirm your diagnosis and course of treatment. This form can be handed in at your surgery’s reception if you are unable to get an appointment with your GP.
- How often will I need the injection?: The injection can be given every 2-6 months, depending on the cause of your low B12 levels. There is no need to be re-tested.
- How do I book?: To book please call the booking line on 0333 311 1007.
What is Vitamin B12 deficiency?
Vitamin B12 is a nutrient needed to keep your body fit and healthy. Your body doesn’t make it, it absorbs the vitamin from food – particularly meat, fish, eggs and dairy. Some people have conditions such as pernicious anaemia which stop them from getting as much as they need, other people, particularly those following a vegan diet, don’t get enough of the vitamin from their food.
Symptoms of deficiency can vary from person to person, but can include extreme tiredness and lack of energy, breathlessness and feeling faint, headaches, pale skin, heart palpitations and sometimes a loss of appetite and weight loss.
What do I do if I think I need Vitamin B12 injection?
To be treated at a Superdrug Health Clinic, we do need to check your levels of Vitamin B12, Folate and Intrinsic Factor Antibodies (IFAs) to understand the cause of your deficiency and ensure that you receive the right treatment.
If you are showing symptoms you can see your GP for a test or arrange it privately.
How do I make an appointment?
When you have your results, if you need an injection, you can call our Customer Service Team on 0333 311 1007, who will be able to make an appointment with one of our amazing nurses. Please make sure you have these results to hand when booking your appointment, and that you bring a copy of these with you upon your visit to one of our clinics. If you have had the test through your GP our Customer Service Team will send you a form to be completed by your doctor to confirm your diagnosis and course of treatment.
What are the side effects of the B12 injection?
The B12 injection is generally very safe. However, some people may experience some pain, swelling or redness at the injection site, and in much rarer cases headaches, itching or nausea. If any of these symptoms persist or worsen please contact your GP or 111.