Injecting HGH is a relatively simple procedure and millions of people are performing it every day, including children.
If your doctor has considered that you are the right patient for GH treatment, they will prescribe you a specific dosage and offer guidance on when and how to inject.
All you have to do is carefully follow the instructions on how to prepare and administer the medication safely. Below you will discover a detailed step-by-step guide of the injection process.
If you are still not sure how to inject growth hormone medication, you can contact one of our specialists or another licensed medical doctor for help.
How to give yourself an HGH injection?
If this is your first use, then reconstitute the vial with bacteriostatic water or load and prime the auto-injector device.
Do not shake or tap the growth hormone medication forcefully because it will be inactivated. Here is our personal step-by-step guide to the injection process:
- Select an injection site and disinfect it with alcohol wipes/swabs.
- If your product is in a vial, then replace the needle for reconstitution with another sterile one for SC injections. Then pinch your skin with the fingertips of your non-dominant hand and stick the whole needle with your dominant hand under 45°.
- If you are using a pen, then attach a sterile needle to the device and stick it under 90°.
- Press the button/stopper and hold it with the needle inside for a few seconds.
- After you pull the needle out, put sterile gauze and a bandage on top. Do not press or massage the injection site.
- Discard the used needle and the syringe in the container for sharp materials without recapping. Throwing sharp materials in regular waste puts the health of people who handle that waste at risk. Always use new sterile needles for the next injections.
Correct and safe administration of HGH
Now let’s clear up the preparatory part of the injection process. First of all, you check if the medication is suitable for use. After reconstitution, growth hormone should be a clear and colorless liquid.
Discard the substance immediately if there is any discoloration or turbidity
Besides, you should make sure that the injection site you have chosen is clear too. Switch to another one if there is reddening, swelling, pain, wounds, rashes, or signs of inflammation in the area.
When starting therapy you should be able to choose from several different HGH preparations including:
- Vials containing powder
- Preloaded and prefilled pens
- Chambers for use in auto-injector devices
No matter which preparation you will use, growth hormone should be injected into the fat tissue under your skin. This type of injection is called subcutaneous (SC) and it provides the best bioavailability and rate of absorption for HGH.
If you will use growth hormone in a vial, then the powder should be first reconstituted into a liquid using a regular needle and syringe. Then the injection is performed using the lifted skinfold technique.
The method requires you to pinch your skin and insert the needle (a new needle suitable for subcutaneous injections) at a 45° angle.
When using an auto-injector device such as an HGH pen, there is no need to pinch and lift the skin. All you have to do is inject at a 90° angle (holding the pen perpendicular to your skin).
The best results of HGH therapy can be achieved by injecting the medication at the same time every day and creating a habit.
The best time for you will depend on your personal routine. Yet, small studies suggest that injecting before sleep may lead to a slightly better physiological pattern of growth hormone release in the body.
What do you need for growth hormone injections?
Before getting an injection, make sure that you have a medical prescription that allows you to purchase legal and genuine GH.
Growth hormone is a controlled substance and obtaining it without a prescription puts your health at risk. Illegally sold products are often counterfeit, diluted, expired, or contaminated.
Once you begin to prepare to inject the medication, you will need the following items:
- Alcohol wipes/swabs
- Sterile gauze
- Container for sharp materials
- Injector pen with suitable needles
If you will inject growth hormone from a regular vial that requires reconstitution, then instead of an auto-injector device you will need:
- Vial with HGH
- Vial with diluent (bacteriostatic water)
- Sterile syringe
- Sterile needle for withdrawal
- Sterile needle for subcutaneous injections
Where to inject HGH?
Subcutaneous injections typically can be administered at several areas:
- The abdominal area around the belly button
- Outer upper arms
- Front outer thighs
- Lower loins
Most patients prefer the abdominal area for self-administration since it is much more convenient than other injection sites. Furthermore, studies report that injecting in that area causes less pain.
Another method to reduce the sensation of pain during an injection is to ensure that the growth hormone solution is not too cold (if it was stored in the fridge). Therefore, you should leave HGH vials, pens, or cartridges at room temperature for 30 minutes before injection.
Do not expose the medication to heat or direct sunlight because it can render it ineffective
Auto-injector pens require thinner and smaller needles which also helps minimize pain. Your sensation also depends on the total volume injected – lower than 0.8ml is tolerated the most amongst patients.
Here are several extra tips from our medical specialists on how to reduce pain and discomfort during a growth hormone injection:
- Apply pain-numbing cream or ice to your skin before the injection
- Relax your muscles in the injection area to pinch your skin more easily
- When injecting at a 45° angle, turn the bevel of the needle up to prevent skin tearing.
- Pierce through your skin with a single swift motion
- Don’t change the direction of the needle while going in or out of your skin
- Push the plunger of the syringe slowly
According to research, local skin reactions are common after HGH injections and involve transitory complaints such as redness, short-term bleeding, pain, discomfort, and swelling. They resolve spontaneously without treatment.
Make sure to keep a list of the sites where you inject and rotate these sites frequently. Scientists warn that injecting repeatedly on the same spot can lead to the formation of a dent in the area due to lipoatrophy (localized fat loss).
How to choose the best medication for your needs
The best HGH injections, approved by the FDA for therapy in adults include Norditropin, Genotropin, Saizen, Omnitrope, and Humatrope.
All of these brands are available as auto-injector devices and pens. Genotropin, Saizen, Omnitrope, and Humatrope offer injector devices with replaceable cartridges which must be loaded and primed before use.
On the other hand, Norditropin FlexPro Pen and Genotropin Miniquicks are prefilled and preloaded which makes them the easiest to use.
The Miniquicks can deliver just a single dose, while the FlexPro Pen can deliver multiple doses depending on its size – 5, 10, 15, or 30 mg. Yet, the devices can’t be refilled and should be discarded when depleted.
Saizen, Omnitrope, and Humatrope are also available as vials which usually have a lower cost compared to the auto-injector options. Vials must be reconstituted with bacteriostatic or sterile water and then growth hormone must be injected using regular needles and syringes.
More on the topic: What is Humatrope and how to use it?
What could go wrong?
Subcutaneous injections are the easiest method to self-inject a substance at home. The method provides a lower risk of pain, infection, or complications.
In the case of inappropriate technique, there is a risk of injecting the medication within the layers of the skin or in a blood vessel instead of subcutaneously.
This may significantly diminish the effectiveness of the medication but without a higher risk of adverse reactions.
Injecting an air bubble subcutaneously is also not dangerous since the gases can get absorbed from the tissues.
Concerning side-effects include allergic reactions, continuous bleeding, and numbness in the limb. Seek medical help immediately if you experience swelling in your limbs, neck, throat, or tongue, difficulties breathing, and lightheadedness.