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Giving Medicine by Subcutaneous Injection

Get your supplies:

  • Syringe with needle
     Depending on the amount of medication to be given:
      1 cc syringe with 27-gauge needle
      3 cc syringe with needle—used when solution is more than 1 cc
  • Extra needle for mixing
  • Alcohol pad
  • Cotton ball or gauze pad
  • Bottle of medicine
  • Medication log
  • Container for needle disposal

Giving the Injection:

  1. Wash your hands well with soap and warm water or use alcohol based hand sanitizer.
  2. Check the label for correct medication.

      Assembling and Mixing
         (Decapeptyl, Diphereline, Menopur, Bravelle, Pregnyl, Gonapeptyl)

    • A1. Remove the soft metal or plastic cap protecting the rubber stopper of the vial.
    • A2. Clean the top of the medicine bottle with an alcohol pad.
    • A3. Pick up the syringe and the needle for mixing. Twist to secure needle.
    • A4. Open the vial of diluent.
    • A5. Insert the needle into the vial of diluent and pull the plunger to withdraw the diluent.
    • A6. Slowly and cautiously deposit the diluent into the vial of powdered medication.
    • A7. Rotate the vial between your thumb and index finger until the solution is clear.
    • A8. With the needle still in the bottle, turn the bottle upside down
    • A9. Pull back on the plunger and withdraw the newly mixed medication back into the syringe.
    • Remove the syringe from the vial.

      • If Mixing More than One Vial(Menopur, Bravelle)
      • Inject the contents of the syringe (powdered medication mixed with diluent) directly into the next vial of powdered medication. Do not use more diluent for additional vials.
      • Again, rotate the vial between your thumb and index finger until the solution is clear.
      • Withdraw the newly mixed medication from the second vial back into the syringe.
      • Repeat until you have reached your prescribed vial dosage.
      • Withdraw the medication mixture from the final vial into the syringe.
    • A11.Tap the barrel of the syringe to move any air bubbles toward the needle.
    • A12. Remove the mixing needle and replace it with the smaller subcutaneous injection needle.
  3. Choose injection site, rotating sides daily.
  4. Clean your skin site with an alcohol pad.
  5. Push on the plunger to clear any air out of the syringe, or to adjust the dose to the amount you are to take.
  6. Hold the syringe like a pencil and gently pinch up the skin at the site.
  7. With a quick motion, insert the entire needle and depress the plunger slowly.
  8. Remove the needle and quickly press the alcohol pad or your finger onto the site.
  9. Put the used syringe and needle into a puncture proof container with a lid. Do not recap the needle.
  10. Mark the date, time and site of your injection on the calendar or record sheet.

Things to Know

  • A subcutaneous injection is one that is given into the layers of skin and fat on top of the muscle.
  • Store the medicine as you are directed.
  • If the needle bends or it is bent when you remove the needle cover, you should not use it for an injection.
  • If you notice any bleeding on the site of the injection, hold pressure for a few seconds.
  • Be sure to mark the medicine bottle with the date you opened it.
  • Check for how long you can use the medicine bottle after it is opened.
  • Keep your medicine, syringes, needles and old needles and syringes away from children and pets.
  • You can use an empty heavy plastic bottle with a lid as a needle disposal container
  • Ask your nurse how you should throw away your container of used needles and syringes.