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Ferritin 4.6 means : Is it normal, good, bad or dangerous

Ferritin 4.6 means : Is it normal, good, bad or dangerous

In this article we discuss what a Ferritin of 4.6 means, together with its causes, and whether it is good, bad or normal. We also look into the significance of Ferritin 4.6 in pregnancy.

Updated Date : 2024-04-02T19:24:21.681+00:00

What is Ferritin?

Ferritin is a crucial protein that stores iron in your body. It is produced primarily in the liver, spleen, and bone marrow. Iron-rich foods like beef, lentils, and leafy greens contribute to ferritin levels. Its function is to store iron safely, releasing it when your body requires iron for activities like oxygen transport and energy production.

How is Ferritin measured?

Ferritin is measured through a blood test, typically after fasting. Labs employ techniques like chemiluminescent immunoassay (CLIA) or immunoturbidimetry to analyze blood samples and determine the concentration of ferritin accurately.

What are the causes of ferritin of 4.6?

Ferritin of 4.6 have different causes, as listed below.

Iron Deficiency Anemia

Iron deficiency anemia is the most common cause of low serum ferritin levels, indicating a shortage of iron to produce sufficient hemoglobin. This condition often results from inadequate iron intake or absorption.

Chronic Infections

Persistent infections, such as tuberculosis or HIV, can contribute to chronic inflammation, leading to low serum ferritin levels.

Vegetarian or Vegan Diets

Vegetarian or vegan diets may lack sufficient heme iron, contributing to lower iron absorption and resulting in low serum ferritin levels.

Helicobacter Pylori Infection

Infection with H. pylori in the stomach may lead to gastritis and impaired iron absorption, contributing to low serum ferritin levels.

Menstrual Blood Loss

Excessive menstrual bleeding in women can lead to iron deficiency and low serum ferritin levels, particularly if dietary iron intake is insufficient.

Intravenous Iron Therapy

While rare, excessive iron supplementation through intravenous therapy can lead to iron overload and low serum ferritin levels.

Hereditary Hemochromatosis

Hereditary hemochromatosis is a genetic disorder that causes excessive iron absorption, leading to iron overload and subsequent low serum ferritin levels.

Gastric Bypass Surgery

Surgical procedures that alter the digestive system, such as gastric bypass surgery, can impact iron absorption, leading to low serum ferritin levels.

Thyroid Disorders

Conditions like hypothyroidism can affect iron metabolism, resulting in low serum ferritin levels and contributing to iron deficiency.

Medications

Certain medications, such as proton pump inhibitors or antacids, can interfere with iron absorption, leading to low serum ferritin levels.

What is the normal range of Ferritin and how is a Ferritin of 4.6 graded?

Normal Ranges of Ferritin vary according to the age and gender. The ranges are considerably different in adults, children and pregnant women. Refer to the tables below for your exact range.
What are the normal ranges in children?

Age Range Reference Range (ug/L) Is your child deficient?
4 to 15 days 99.6 - 717.0 If your child is aged between 4 days - 15 days, a ferritin level of 4.6 is lower than normal.
15 days to 6 months 14.0 - 647.2 If your child is aged between 15 days - 6 months, a ferritin level of 4.6 is lower than normal.
6 months to 1 year 8.4 - 181.9 If your child is aged between 6 months - 1 year, a ferritin level of 4.6 is lower than normal.
1 to 5 years 5.3 - 99.9 If your child is aged between 1 year - 5 years, a ferritin level of 4.6 is lower than normal.
5 to 14 years 13.7 - 78.8 If your child is aged between 5 years - 14 years, a ferritin level of 4.6 is lower than normal.
Reference : Ferritin normal ranges in children.

What are the normal ranges of ferritin in pregnancy?

Range Inference Ferritin : 4.6
<12 Low Ferritin - Anemia You are here
12 to 45 Normal Ferritin
More than 45 High Ferritin - Could lead to diabetes in pregnancy
Reference : Ferritin and Anemia in PregnancyGestational Diabetes Mellitus and relation to Ferritin

What are the normal ranges in adult men?

Range Inference Ferritin : 4.6
<15 Low Ferritin - Anemia You are here
>15 - 35 Below Normal but not anemia
35 - 220 Normal
>220 Higher than normal
Reference : Ferritin Reference Ranges in Adults

What are the normal ranges in adult women?

Range Inference Ferritin : 4.6
<15 Low Ferritin - Anemia You are here
15 to 136 Normal Ferritin
More than 136 High Ferritin
Reference : Ferritin Reference Ranges in Adults

What does a ferritin level of 4.6 mean?

A level of ferritin 4.6 is considered to be very low, and you will probably be experiencing various symptoms related to iron deficiency. This means that the amount of iron in your body is greatly reduced and may have been so for a long time.

Is ferritin 4.6 good?

Ferritin 4.6 is not good, and you have a high chance of being deficient in iron.

Is ferritin 4.6 bad?

Ferritin 4.6 is bad for health, as you will experience effects of iron deficiency.

Is ferritin 4.6 dangerous?

Ferritin 4.6 is just above the minimum measurable range and poses risks from the effects of iron deficiency.

Is ferritin 4.6 low?

Ferritin 4.6 is very low, and you will experience various symptoms of iron deficiency like tiredness, fatigue, difficulty climbing stairs, breathlessness, repeated infections.

What foods will help increase a ferritin of 4.6?

The following list of foods can help boost ferritin levels of 4.6. However, it is important to remember that

Breakfast cereals, fortified with 100% of the DV for iron

Consider getting upto 1 serving per day.

Oysters, eastern, cooked with moist heat

Consider getting upto 3 ounces per day.

White beans, canned

Consider getting upto 1 cup per day.

Beef liver, pan-fried

Consider getting upto 3 ounces per day.

Lentils, boiled and drained

Consider getting upto ½ cup per day.

Spaghetti, whole wheat, cooked

Consider getting upto 1 cup per day.

Tuna, light, canned in water

Consider getting upto 3 ounces per day.

Chickpeas, boiled and drained

Consider getting upto ½ cup per day.

Milk

Consider getting upto 1 cup per day.

Suggest a weekly diet plan for increasing ferritin levels of 4.6

Low levels of ferritin cannot be managed by diet alone. More often that not, iron supplments are required. Consult your doctor for appropriate medical advice. The following diet plans may help to supplement iron in your food.

Monday

Diet Plan to improve ferritin of 4.6
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
Breakfast cereal fortified with 100% DV for iron Lentils (boiled and drained, ½ cup) Beef liver (pan-fried, 3 ounces)

Tuesday

Diet Plan to improve ferritin of 4.6
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
Tofu (firm, ½ cup) Lentils (boiled and drained, ½ cup) Turkey, roasted, breast meat and skin, 3 ounces

Wednesday

Diet Plan to improve ferritin of 4.6
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
White beans, canned, 1 cup Cashew nuts, oil roasted, 1 ounce (18 nuts) Turkey, roasted, breast meat and skin, 3 ounces

Thursday

Diet Plan to improve ferritin of 4.6
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
White beans, canned, 1 cup Tomato (canned, stewed, ½ cup) Beef, braised bottom round, trimmed to 1/8" fat, 3 ounces

Friday

Diet Plan to improve ferritin of 4.6
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
Lentils (boiled and drained, ½ cup) Chickpeas (boiled and drained, ½ cup) Turkey, roasted, breast meat and skin, 3 ounces

Saturday

Diet Plan to improve ferritin of 4.6
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
Breakfast cereal fortified with 100% DV for iron Tomato (canned, stewed, ½ cup) Beef, braised bottom round, trimmed to 1/8" fat, 3 ounces

Sunday

Diet Plan to improve ferritin of 4.6
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
Lentils (boiled and drained, ½ cup) Lentils (boiled and drained, ½ cup) Beef, braised bottom round, trimmed to 1/8" fat, 3 ounces

What are some symptoms of a ferritin of 4.6 ?

A ferritin of 4.6 will usually show symptoms of iron deficiency. These will include various symptoms including those listed below.

Brittle nails

Nails that are fragile and prone to breaking

Difficulty swallowing

Feeling of obstruction or discomfort when swallowing

Unusual cravings for non-nutritive substances

Desire to eat items with no nutritional value

Pale skin

Skin may appear paler than usual

Headaches

Frequent or severe headaches

Hair loss

Experiencing hair thinning or shedding

Frequent infections

Increased susceptibility to infections

Poor appetite

Reduced desire to eat or loss of appetite

Cravings for non-nutritive substances (pica)

Desire to eat ice, clay, or other non-food items

Weakness

Decreased strength and stamina

Dr.Bhargav Raut - Profile Image

Reviewed By -

Dr.Bhargav Raut is a qualified Pathologist, with over 5 years of experience in the field
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