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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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Injection site
Dec 14, 2004

just started fuzeon, not a problem giving the injection, but running out of area to give them. I have very low body fat- very muscular, and only available place is belly and the area is becoming irritated and tender. Also what can i use , topically, to calm the irritation, ie aloe ???Any suggestions. thanks for your time, Jon , Boston, Mass

Response from Mr. Kurtyka

Hi Jon,

Here's some suggestions that have worked for others...

Massaging the site with your hand or with a mechanical vibrator often help minimize ISRs. Sometime heat helps, sometimes cold (such as ice packs).

When you inject, make sure the bevel of the needle (where the liquid comes out) is pointing DOWN. If it points up you may get more irritation from the medication.

Make sure the medication is at room temperature.

Studies of Fuzeon were done with injections in the abdomen, thighs and arms. Since you don't have a lot of sites to choose from, you might want to consider your but. Please note that Fuzeon is not approved for butt injections. Make sure you check with your health care provider first to make sure it's acceptable to them. Sometimes the upper arms have enough fat, but they are hard to reach. Is anyone able to help you inject into the arms? Some patients have been able to self-inject into the arms while propping themselves against a wall or door-jamb to "pinch the fat" or they've used a large clip (like you'd use to close a potato chip bag) to pinch the fat and hold it in place.

Some people have found that applying an over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream helps, sometime a topical antihistamine cream like Benadryl helps. I've also heard of folks ditching the needles that come with the Fuzeon kit and using different brands. If you use a brand where the needle can be removed, you could try using one needle to draw the medicine up from the vial, then switch needles so that you have a brand new one for the injection.

Hopefully one (or more) of these suggestions will help! If you find anything that works, please let me know so I can share it with others.


Fuzeon resistance
Tanning and ISRs

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