Copaxone Site Pain

A board to discuss the Multiple Sclerosis modifying drug Copaxone

Copaxone Site Pain

Postby Tex » Fri Apr 14, 2006 1:26 pm

My wife has recently begun Copaxone. I am her caregiver, and give the injections. She is rebelling at receiving these, because of the bee-sting pain she feels afterwards. The RN who coached me recommended heat before and cold after. I have been told that my atitude is gentle, but am at my wit's end. Any comments are welcome...
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Postby elaine » Fri Apr 14, 2006 6:00 pm

hi Tex
i have been on Capaxone for about eight months and the bee sting feeling and itching stoped after about 3 months.
It does get better, still hate doing it but not as bad
good luck
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Postby Houdini » Sat Apr 15, 2006 7:51 am

Hi Tex,

Sorry to hear about your wife's difficulty with the Copaxone shots. I have been on Copaxone for just about two years and can tell you that the site reaction and stinging subsides over time. Are you using the autoinjector? I prefer the autoinjector, but I've hear others prefer the shot without injector -- you should try both to see what your wife prefers.

The routine I have used, which has served me well, is to run the shower while I give myself the shot and immediately get into the shower and expose the injected area to the flow of the water. I find the heat and stimulus of the shower helps to mask the bee sting sensation.

Also, be sure to rotate sites, you really don't want to hit the same spot twice in a week.

Good luck!
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Postby stella_blue76 » Thu Jul 06, 2006 6:08 am

I have a question if anyone wants to take it on...

Do you think site reactions can have anything to do with the setting on the autoinject? I've been playing around with the settings a bit to try and find the right one for certian areas. I was also told by the Shared Solutions nurse that your settings are unique to you and the body type you have.

I, for one, am a li'l fat girl, yet I have a lot of muscle in certian areas that I have to inject in, too. if you have more fat in certian areas, are you supposed to inject deeper? What are your autoinject settings?
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Postby ohtopher » Tue Jul 11, 2006 9:07 pm

I think you should talk to Shared Solutions for an official response, but...
Yes, definitely! They make it adjustable for a reason. I think injecting deeper is better in areas where you've got a little extra chiach (except if you hit a muscle). It takes some playing-with to find the right settings for the different parts of your body, but it's well worth it in the long run. Write 'em down as you experiment.
Also, I suggest you be extra vigilant in following a hygienic and systematic routine for your shots. Many site reactions are due to sloppy technique. The system I use is: choose a site not used in the last 30 days (trust me, there are 63 official target areas, so a new one every 30 days is not hard), warm site with a compress for at least 5 minutes, wash site with hot, soapy water and rinse with clean warm water (do not use an alcohol swab), inject and remove the needle at 90 degrees to your body (sometimes hard to do, but watch closely), put pressure on injection site with a cotton ball and hold it on there for a minute or two (can reduce potential bruising or leakage), then cover your injection with a band-aid (that way you're less likely to hit the same spot 6 or 7 days later; and yes you can find showerproof bandaids that last 7 days). This has been my system for 4 years and I hardly ever get site reactions.
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Postby notasperfectasyou » Fri Jul 28, 2006 8:23 pm

We've switched from Avonex.

We did the our second injectiopn tonight. The injectio itself was simple and pain free. After the injection there was a burning/bee sting feeling that lasted a couple minutes.

Does anyone have suggestions on minimizing this? Is this what the compress is supposed to mitigate?

napay
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Postby ohtopher » Sat Jul 29, 2006 9:11 am

I sometimes get a sting or itching/redness in one particular spot, but not always. I suggest a depth adjustment (with or without the autoject). Deeper is sometimes better. As you make adjustments, you'll probably find a depth that works best in each area you inject. Take notes (Shared Solutions can send you a charting calendar to keep track of your shots) and take heart that it'll likely dissipate over time as you become better at doing, and your body becomes used to, the shots . The warm compress may also help. Beyond adjusting to the sub-Q shots, it's important to remember that it takes time for your system to respond to Copaxone. We're retraining our immune systems to use our innate inflammatory response to help manage MS rather than to exacerbate it. Hang in there, and don't forget there's a 24-7 nurse available at S/S if you need one.
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