Life with MS & EDS

May 14, 2009

Copaxone Injection Sites – Updated

Filed under: Uncategorized — by mseds @ 3:05 pm
Tags: , , ,

After posting my injection site rotation, I kept fiddling around with it.  Too many sites were too close together.  I took the advice that you don’t want to use an injection site more than once every 7 days very seriously.  Not only did I not want to use a site twice in a week, but I didn’t want two shots within a site anywhere close to each other.  I know that on a few occasions I’ve thought I was spreading my shot locations apart, only to realize after I do the shot that I’ve messed up and those usually hurt more.  My husband still has the urge to get out a permanent marker to identify spots!  I think I’m getting better at it, but it’s certainly not fool-proof.

I took another stab at seeing how far apart I could get the injection sites within each shot location.  I’m still not injecting in my thighs, so I’m using my tush/bottom as the alternative shot location.  Also, while I used to like doing shots in my arms, I’m no longer fond of that location!  Those hurt now, but I’m not quite ready to ditch them from the rotation.  I’m not even sure what other spot I’d use.

Here’s what I came up with:

Injection Sites - Updated

Injection Sites - Updated

I did receive some useful guidance from my nurse at Dr. Specialist’s office.  She advised me that I can use far more of my stomach area than I am currently using.  I can go further up as well as further out, even around to what I consider my hips (not what Shared Solutions considers my hips.)  I’ve not yet figured out how to work that into my shot rotations.  I’m basically saving those outer tummy areas for times when I can’t do another shot location for one reason or another.  For example, I still need someone to keep an eye on the red line for me on some of the shots behind me (I can’t always hear that little noise the thing makes.)  I also realized I was pushing too hard on the AutoJect, so Hubby will help me hold the thing so that I don’t press in too far.  However, I imagine there will be a time when someone isn’t around to help me for those shots, so I plan to use the other tummy/hip options then.



  1. A nurse once told me it was ok to inject anywhere I could pinch skin enough to cover the needle. And I NEVER went in very deep, sometimes it bubbled up, but always went back down. I suppose everyone’s skin is different. You have a good looking plan there.

    Comment by Diane J Standiford — May 14, 2009 @ 4:06 pm

  2. Ivy,
    Hi! I’m Kelley and I found your blog through the Carnival of MS Bloggers. You might consider your thighs for injection sites. I had a problem at first when I did the tops of my thighs, but now that I’ve moved over to the sides (where I have some, ahem!, excess tissue) it seems to work better.

    Since I’ve just started reading your blog, do you use warm or cold compresses? I have found the warm ones only make things worse for me. But a cold compress for two minutes before and after the injection works very well for me.

    I look forward to reading more of your blog. Please visit mine at


    Comment by Kelley — May 14, 2009 @ 4:11 pm

  3. Thanks, Diane! I’ve also heard that advice. Unfortunately I can definitely pinch an inch in several additional places that are not listed here! The nurse encouraged me to try more locations, but I like the 7-day rotation cycle. As I get better at this, I suppose I’ll get more adventurous!

    Comment by mseds — May 14, 2009 @ 5:22 pm

  4. My arms and legs react horribly. I inject only my stomach and have no issues at all. My limbs are quite slim and my stomach is NOT. It seems the more fat, the less the pain and inflammation at the site.

    Comment by mommyknow — May 14, 2009 @ 9:33 pm

  5. I completely agree that fatty areas are far less painful! Have you noticed any long-term skin damage from just using your stomach?

    Comment by mseds — May 16, 2009 @ 8:41 am

  6. @mseds — no I haven’t on my stomach, but on my legs yes … and that is just after a 6 months with very little leg injecting.

    I have recently developed problems with my lymph nodes and am taking a break from the Avonex and Copaxone. I am looking forward to NO drugs for awhile. I find the flu’ish feelings difficult.

    Comment by mommyknow — May 20, 2009 @ 9:09 pm

  7. Hey Kelley,

    Sorry for just now seeing your comment! It got caught in the spam filter, which I rarely check.

    I use warm compresses (the ones SharedSolutions sends) for 5 minutes before each shot and then use an ice pack for a while after each shot. I find those help (perhaps it’s just a placebo effect; I’m not sure!) I tried the sides of my thighs a couple of times, but I have so many visible veins I find it really difficult to find a good shot spot. I have rather translucent skin which allows me to see vein locations pretty easily and I try to avoid them. I thought that the sides were as painful as the tops. I have a general dislike of shooting-up in appendages. Arms stink now, too, but are still better than thighs.

    I’ve not yet experimented with doing cold compresses before shots. I like the idea of warmth because it seems to carry the injected liquid away faster, but I’m not sure if that is really what happens. I do think the warm compresses have increased my bleeding on the rare occasion the spot gets too hot. I’ll have to try ice before a shot and see what happens. It’s good to know that’s helped you.

    Take care,

    Comment by mseds — July 22, 2009 @ 1:19 pm

  8. […] learned that I could get used to doing shots, although thank goodness for the […]

    Pingback by It’s my 1st MS-iversary « Life with MS & EDS — November 20, 2009 @ 6:28 am

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