Why does it sting in thigh? - Pernicious Anaemi...

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Why does it sting in thigh?

TexasDixie profile image

I've twice self injected into my thigh and the first time it stung a lot but today it was absolutely awful and I jumped so bad that the needle came out and I lost a little of the liquid. Why does it sting so badly in thigh yet never does when anyone else administers it in my arm? Its putting me right off of the idea of doing it again although I desperately need it.

17 Replies

I don't like doing it in the thigh either. Always do it in the top of my arm, where the nurses do it... Worth a try

TexasDixie profile image
TexasDixie in reply to Baggy8

Thankyou. I'll have to try. Nurses and my daughter do it in my arm with no problems

If you swab the area make sure it is dry. Make sure b12 is at room temperature

Try subcutaneous?

It sies sting fir me sometimes arm thigh or stomach (sc)

I personally get on with sc. At home The nurses does IM in my upper arm.

That can be really off putting so I have developed a routine which I think helps avoid it stinging.If you use a pre-injection swab then do that first, before setting up the needles and syringe.

Put the ampoule into a skin crevice, I use my groin. This warms it up as it can sting if injected cold.

Now open the string and needle packs putting a draw up needle onto the syringe.

Shake the ampoule to get its contents into the body.

Snap off the head of the ampoule and draw up the b12.

Swap the needles for a fresh one.

Now you are ready.

This has worked for me over the last four years. Don’t rush it though. Here’s wishing you easy, sting free injections.

TexasDixie profile image
TexasDixie in reply to kcbrecks

Thankyou. I'll try that. Here's hoping...👍

kcbrecks profile image
kcbrecks in reply to TexasDixie

Another little trick. When you push the remaining air out of the syringe you usually get a little fluid coming out of the end of the needle, just flick the syringe to shake off any drops on the needle. They can cause a bit of a sting as well.

I don't do thighs because injections there always go poorly for me; they hurt and I get lumps and bruises. If I'm doing it myself, it's always subcutaneous in my belly, rotating around different spots. But usually I enlist the help of my partner and do IM in upper arm and SQ in lower back also.

Additionally, I find hydroxocobalamin always stings me, but cyanocobalamin and methylcobalamin don't.

TexasDixie profile image
TexasDixie in reply to lynxis

Thankyou. What is IM and SQ? I've seen it written a few times recently but never heard of it. I always get hydroxocobalimin. Its what our health centre's all use. I have no problems with it in my arm at all. This is a horrible illness isn't it 😣 Hope you keep really well 🤗

lynxis profile image
lynxis in reply to TexasDixie

Yes, IM is intramuscular and SQ is a abbreviation for subcutaneous, i.e "under the skin," where there is a layer of fat between the skin and muscle. For SQ you can use a shorter (and some use a smaller gauge) needle; I use 25G, 5/8 or 1/2 inch vs the 1 inch that I use for IM. There are several SQ sites (including the thighs). You can search for a picture or an article to show you all of them.

It does suck to have chronic illness (I also have other autoimmune conditions) but I try to stay in gratitude as much as possible (though it's not always easy). It could always be worse. I don't mean that to diminish the struggle, which is very real.

I wish you really well, too. ♥️

lynxis profile image
lynxis in reply to lynxis

By the way, probably you know thus, but since it's not intuitive, a smaller gauge is a larger number. A 23G needle is bigger around than a 25G. 🙂

TexasDixie profile image
TexasDixie in reply to lynxis

Just realised IM is intramuscular 😀

TexasDixie I am assuming you're not injecting with the same needle used to draw B12 into the syringe.

Perhaps once a month I feel an injection much more than usual. I use my thigh with the following technique although I don't think it's popular. It works well for me.

""Jablecki (2000) suggests placing the point of the needle on the skin, and if there is no pain at the initial point of contact, the needle is pushed through the skin into the muscle. If there is pain at the initial point of contact, the needle is moved over 2 to 3 mm at a time until a painless point on the skin is found, at which point the needle is then inserted through the skin and into the muscle. This technique is based on the anatomy of the cutaneous innervation of the skin in which there are distinct points on the skin in which painful stimuli do not cause pain sensation because there are no pain receptors"


lynxis profile image
lynxis in reply to Cetus

I use the same needle, so as not to waste anything, but I'm sure this causes me more pain than is necessary. Is it just a matter of comfort, or is there some other reason I should switch them?

TexasDixie profile image
TexasDixie in reply to lynxis

I use a blunt filter loading needle to draw up the b12 then change to a different one to inject . The filter is for catching tiny particles of glass from the vial which may have gone into the vial when breaking the neck. It gives me a sense of safety as I don't want to inject glass particles no matter how small.

lynxis profile image
lynxis in reply to TexasDixie

Where do you get a filter needle?

The drawing-up needle may get slightly blunted, if not slightly barbed.

I believe using two needles is mainly for comfort, although I imagine some penetration damage may also be avoided.

I've used just one needle myself at times and can't say it was a lot more uncomfortable but if you are getting discomfort then that might a reason not to do it that way.

You may be using a wider gauge needle to draw up than would be chosen for injection and a bigger needle will be felt more.

Not that long ago I think someone here hinted at a tricky technique with one needle which avoids blunting but I don't really know what they meant.

I find injecting in my thigh to be painful most times I try so I usually do arms or SC where most of the time it doesn’t hurt.

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