Pernicious Anaemia Society

Self injecting advice needed

I received bottle methylcobalamin from B12 charity. it is 1mg so 1ml per injection. I want to try SC injections as I have nobody to show me and worried about IM. What size needles, syringes do I need. I have read on this forum that using insulin needles, the needle can get blunt when putting in the bottle to draw methyl. Is it best to use a different needle for drawing and then injecting or will it be ok to use insulin syringes to keep it simple. I assume I cannot use an insulin pen because these are specific to different insulin medicines. Any advice is appreciated. Is there a good video to show me what to do. If anybody is a nurse and willing to show me over Skype that would be wonderful as i am a bit apprehensive doing it the first time.

6 Replies


I am so glad you are at a point where you are now injecting.

I use a 1ml 29G x 1/2" needle. I take a small pre-injection swab to clean the rubber top of the methyl bottle (every time prior to inserting a brand new needle).

When I have drawn the correct amount, I then make sure I clean the needle again prior to injecting with a pre-injection swab.

To inject, I grab an inch of 'fat' (plenty of that on me) and then insert the needle at a 45 degree angle, slowly. You will get used to this and be able to gauge the technique that is right for you. Done correctly, I find there is no pain at all.

Be very careful to keep your bottle of methyl wrapped in tin foil as light is not good for it.

I have been doing this for years and never had a problem.

Good luck!


Or if your needle phobic like me you can use one of those injection assisted things which push the needle in for you when you press a button called inject-ease. Palcolabs or Ambimedinc. I use the nevershare insulin needles, small fine 1/2".

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i use Medisave for my syringes etc, good prices and fast delivery.

BD microlance 3 needles 23g x 1" x 100

Bd plastipak syringes 2ml x 100

in your thigh.

good luck Linda x


Like Linda I buy my needles, pre-injection swabs and my first sharps box from medisave (advice I got from here). I use u-100 insulin 1ml size and inject into my stomach. My GP is happy to dispose of my sharps box for me free of charge (check with own GP), then issue me with a new one. I wish that I had started self injecting much sooner than I did as I now have long-term nerve damage and struggle too walk due too not having my b12 injections regularly

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Thanks all for advice.


hi maycov. cos i use SQ, (on my Environmental Doc's suggestions) i started off with 0.5 mls b12 on alternate days. i found this incremental approach took longer to get results. however, for me it helped avoid the sometimes sudden ''kick start'' or ''wakening up of the nerves'' response that can be uncomfortable for some ppl.

of course this response when & if it happens, varies from person to person. for example i got no skin reactions. my facial neuralgic pain & swallowing difficulties (which were v. acute) & other 'nerve' symptoms just exacerbate for a short period, post injection, before disappearing. those have been 'for me' the advantages of a lower dose SQ over a longer period of time.

i use the same 'insulin' needle/syringe for drawing up & injecting. the drawing up can blunt the needle a little, but i've been able to cope with that one. u can't separate the insulin needle from the syringe, or a least not the ones i've got.

hope that's helpful


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