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Tips for Giving Yourself Fertility Drug Injections (and Making It Hurt Less)
You want me to Inject What? ...Where?
It’s bound to happen during your IVF cycle. Your partner is stuck at work or away on a trip and you find yourself staring at your supply of syringes and fertility drugs in fear, denial, and sadness. Don’t worry, we can help!
Here are a few tips for administering fertility drug injections and a little humor to help you get through it:
Follistim or Gonal-F. The great thing about the gonadotropin fertility drugs is that some of them come in a pre-filled pen with a little extra medication in the vial to account for human error. Ice the injection site with a small ice pack. Make sure your hands are clean, and you have cleaned the area with an alcohol swab. Follow your fertility doctor’s dosing instructions, pinch a fatty area of your stomach (probably somewhere next to the section that’s still bloated from Clomid), insert the needle, and push the button or plunger on the syringe. Eat a brownie.
Lupron or Eligard. These fertility drugs are most likely administered with a measly, non-intimidating needle. Follow instructions as above. Eat a cookie.
Progesterone in Oil (PIO). If you’re lucky, your fertility nurse has drawn two circles the size of a city park on your lower back/upper behind as targets for where to stick the needle. Follow preparation instructions as above and draw up the PIO into the syringe. Make sure you follow your doctor's instructions for the proper dosage, using the correct needle size. Look over your shoulder into a mirror. Perch yourself on the bathroom sink when possible; laugh at how ridiculous you look right now. Take a deep breath, and aim for the center of one of your targets. Use a warm cloth to gently massage the injection site. Text your significant other about how awesome you are.
If all else fails, you can make arrangements for your fertility nurse to administer the injection for you. This, of course, will require you to drive to the clinic (change out of your pajamas). You might also consider having your sister help out, but make sure you’re on excellent speaking terms otherwise she might find enjoyment in your suffering.
For more advice on how to make fertility drug injections hurt less, visit the Tips for administering Intramuscular (IM) and Subcutaneous (Sub-Q) injections thread on FertileThoughts.com!