Are B12 Injections Covered By Insurance?

If your physician authorizes a B12 shot as a medically required treatment and you have been formally admitted to a hospital, a skilled nursing home, or hospice, Part A (hospital insurance) may assist cover the costs.

What is the average cost of a B12 shot?

How much does a b12 shot set you back? The cost of a B12 shot varies depending on your insurance coverage. They usually cost between $50 and $80.

Do I need a prescription for B12 injections?

Vitamin B12 injections can only be obtained with a prescription after a clinical diagnosis of low levels. Because the human liver accumulates vitamin B12 throughout time, low levels are uncommon in most healthy persons.

However, some people are more susceptible to deficiency and may benefit from vitamin B12 injections or tablets.

People with gastrointestinal issues

Vitamin B12 release and absorption may be affected by gastrointestinal conditions.

Gastric atrophy, or damage to the stomach, can be caused by pernicious anemia.

People who have had gastrointestinal surgery, such as weight loss surgery, may have less of the cells that secrete stomach acid and intrinsic factor. Vitamin B12 absorption may be affected as a result of this.

Older adults

According to research published in 2015, vitamin B12 deficiency is more common in persons over the age of 60, and certain people may benefit from vitamin B12 injections.

The researchers discovered that disorders linked to decreased stomach acid production, such as gastric atrophy, are more common in older persons. Low stomach acid also encourages the growth of some bacteria, which depletes vitamin B12 reserves.

Vegetarians and vegans

Because vitamin B12 is mostly found in animal sources, those who eat a plant-based diet are more likely to be vitamin B12 deficient.

In a 2010 study of 689 males, researchers discovered that those who ate a plant-based diet had greater rates of vitamin B12 insufficiency. Compared to just 1% of those who ate meat, over half of vegans and 7% of vegetarians had inadequate vitamin B12 levels.

Vitamin B12 is transferred to the baby through the placenta and breast milk, thus vegetarians and vegans who are pregnant may need to take supplements or eat fortified foods. If the baby is exclusively breastfed, he or she may not get enough vitamin B12. This can result in long-term and serious neurological problems.

A doctor may propose injections in rare circumstances, but research shows that taking extra vitamin B12 by mouth is just as beneficial as getting an injection in a muscle. It is also less expensive.

Are B12 shots better than pills?

A vitamin B12 injection isn’t something you can just pick up at the supermarket. It is only available with a doctor’s prescription, and it must be administered appropriately to reap the full effects. Vitamin B12 tablets may be equally helpful as injections if you have a vitamin B12 shortage. They are easily accessible, less expensive, and can be taken orally. Vitamin B12 injections, on the other hand, are more readily absorbed in the body and do not need to be given as frequently as oral tablets. However, it’s equally crucial to consider what’s going on around you.

Can my doctor give me B12 injections?

Vitamin B12 deficiency anemia is typically treated with vitamin B12 injections.

Hydroxocobalamin is usually the preferred option because it lasts longer in the body.

You’ll have these injections every other day for the first two weeks, or until your symptoms start to improve.

Following this period, your treatment will be determined by whether the reason of your vitamin B12 shortage is related to your food or if the shortfall is producing any neurological issues, such as problems with thinking, memory, or behavior.

Pernicious anemia, which is not related to your food, is the most common cause of vitamin B12 deficiency in the UK.


You may be prescribed vitamin B12 tablets to take every day between meals if your vitamin B12 deficiency is caused by a lack of the vitamin in your diet.

People who have trouble getting enough vitamin B12 in their diets, such as vegans, may require vitamin B12 supplements for the rest of their lives.

People with vitamin B12 insufficiency caused by a prolonged bad diet may be advised to discontinue taking the tablets after their vitamin B12 levels have returned to normal and their diet has improved, despite the fact that this is a rare occurrence.

Other foods that include vitamin B12 include yeast extract (including Marmite), fortified breakfast cereals, and soy products, if you’re a vegetarian or vegan or seeking for alternatives to meat and dairy products.

When shopping for food, look at the nutrition labels to discover how much vitamin B12 is in each item.

Not diet-related

If your vitamin B12 deficiency isn’t due to a shortage of vitamin B12 in your food, you’ll require a hydroxocobalamin injection every 2 to 3 months for the remainder of your life.

If you suffer neurological symptoms such as numbness or tingling in your hands and feet that are caused by a vitamin B12 deficiency, you will be referred to a haematologist and may need injections every two months.

Your haematologist will tell you how long you should continue with the injections.

In the United Kingdom, hydroxocobalamin is favored over cyanocobalamin for vitamin B12 injections. This is due to the fact that hydroxocobalamin lasts longer in the body.

If you need vitamin B12 injections on a regular basis, cyanocobalamin should be given once a month, whereas hydroxocobalamin should be given every three months.

Because hydroxocobalamin is the chosen treatment, cyanocobalamin injections are not frequently provided on the NHS.

Replacement vitamin B12 tablets, on the other hand, are normally in the form of cyanocobalamin.

Are B12 injections expensive?

Those seeking treatment for vitamin B12 insufficiency frequently have questions and concerns about the expense of supplements. Health care might be a need, but it can also be a financial burden, and the expense of B12 injections versus oral supplements is a concern that many people consider. The treatment technique is governed by both lifestyle and the cause of vitamin B12 insufficiency. Those who do not get enough vitamin B12 from their food, for example, can usually maintain adequate levels with oral supplements. Those who have anemia or don’t have enough stomach acid to break down the vitamin in the digestive tract, on the other hand, must use injections as a therapy.

It can be difficult to estimate the cost of a B12 injection without doing some research, but estimating the cost of an oral B12 supplement is rather simple because they are sold in stores. If you and your doctor decide that a vitamin B12 oral supplement is the best way to address your deficiency, you may expect to pay anywhere from $7.80 to $40 at a retail drugstore. The cost is determined by the brand, dose, and count. To maintain optimal vitamin B12 levels in the blood, oral supplements must be taken on a daily basis.

Although a B12 injection is more expensive than other oral supplements, it is used less frequently. B12 injections, for example, can cost anywhere from $20 to $100. The cost is mostly determined by your insurance coverage and the location where the shot will be given. If you give your own doses, the cost of B12 injection is usually around $27 per vial, and several inexpensive injection kits with alcohol wipes and syringes are available for around $30. B12 injections are usually given once a month as a type of treatment.

How long does B12 shot last?

Simply said, the duration of the B12 shot varies from person to person. The benefits of B12 vitamins normally last 48 to 72 hours following the initial injection, though this varies slightly from person to person.

Are there any side effects with B12 injections?

It’s possible that you’ll have pain/redness at the injection site, minor diarrhea, itching, or a generalized feeling of swelling. Tell your doctor or pharmacist right away if any of these side effects persist or worsen.

Remember that your doctor provided this medication because he or she believes the benefit to you outweighs the risk of adverse effects. The majority of people who take this medicine do not have any substantial adverse effects.

Low potassium levels in the blood may be a side effect of this drug (hypokalemia). If you have any of the following unlikely but dangerous side effects: muscle cramps, weakness, or an abnormal heartbeat, contact your doctor straight once.

While taking cyanocobalamin, people with a rare blood illness (polycythemia vera) may experience symptoms connected to this disorder. If you have any of the following uncommon but life-threatening symptoms: chest pain (particularly with shortness of breath), weakness on one side of the body, sudden eyesight changes, or difficulty speaking, seek medical help right once.

If you have any really significant adverse effects, such as shortness of breath, swollen ankles/feet, unusual tiredness, or unexpected/sudden weight gain, seek medical treatment immediately once.

This medicine seldom causes a severe allergic reaction. However, if you detect any symptoms of a major allergic response, such as a rash, itching/swelling (particularly of the face/tongue/throat), extreme dizziness, or problems breathing, seek medical help right once.

This isn’t an exhaustive list of potential adverse effects. Contact your doctor or pharmacist if you have any other side effects not listed above.

For medical advice on side effects, contact your doctor. You can contact the FDA by calling 1-800-FDA-1088 or visiting to report side effects.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects if you live in Canada. You can contact Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345 to report side effects.

Why would you need B12 injections?

Shots of vitamin B12 are quite effective. Untreated vitamin B12 deficiency can cause neurological difficulties or pernicious anemia, which occurs when your body doesn’t generate enough red blood cells to meet your demands ( 16 ). The most frequent technique to prevent or treat a deficiency is with vitamin B12 shots.