Sunday, October 24, 2010


Here, girls and boys, is why you should never do an Enbrel injection without icing beforehand!

The other night I got home, took the Enbrel out of the fridge, set my timer, figured I could jump in the shower, do my Methotrexate injection, then get the Enbrel shot done, all before getting dinner. Why not? The shots are a breeze now!

By the time I'd taken out my contacts and had my shower and gotten all the other stuff out for my shots, 22 minutes had elapsed. Hmm, 8 minutes for the Methotrexate injection? Sure! And, indeed, I did it – with 2 minutes to spare. Course that meant no time for icing my stomach. When I first started doing injections, I'd been icing my stomach for 20 minutes, but lately it's been 10, sometimes slightly less, so I figured, what the hell? So off I went with the Enbrel. I didn't even both with alcohol swabs for either injection, since I'd just had a shower, and I'd read somewhere (couldn't remember where, but I knew it was a reputable site) that soap and water were just as good as alcohol.

Bang! And it was done. There was a biggish blood drop, but that's happened before, and it didn't sting anymore than normal, so great!

Next day, huge bloody bruise!

I didn't make the connection at all until sometime later: no icing, big bloody bruise. Oh!!! No icing = big bloody bruise.

So, this week, back to icing for at least 10 minutes....


  1. Nice reminder of your RA Laurie! :( I wonder if you hit a blood vessel causing some internal bleeding?

  2. I use an auto-injector for my humira and never bruise and never use ice. The only time I bruised is when the nurse gave me my first shot. Huge bruise, and after nearly five months I can't still faintly see it.

  3. Hi Andrew & Joan,

    Anything's possible! I could have hit a blood vessel. It could have been the lack of icing. It could have just been the wrong spot. Maybe I'm just superstitious, lol! I will be going back to icing, though. If I do bruise again with the icing at some point in future, I will let you all know.

    Would love to hear from more people what their experience are. It will be our own little RA injection study!

  4. Hmmm I'm suppose to start one of these if my next round with metho fails me. I'm not going to be good at injections i'm sure of it. I don't know where or how we will work around this but something needs to be done for sure. Today i'm swelling like a blimp and hurting good. Not fun. I'll start the second round of metho in 2 weeks (long story on why the wait) so I'm hoping it will help me. I hope it doesn't hurt you. Hug. Tammy

  5. Thats an impressive looking bruise you have there! I never used an ice pack when I was using Enbrel, now that I'm using Humira I ice my leg down for 3-4 minutes before an injection.

  6. Wow! I've never iced in the several years I've been self-injecting. Sometimes I get bruises, mostly not. I kind of attributed it to bruising easily from mtx or hitting a vessel. But, maybe your body does need ice. Whatever the reason, that's an impressive needle bruise!

    In other news: cute tummy!

  7. Ouch! hopefully it was just a one-off!

  8. Ouch! That looks painful, Laurie.

    I've never iced before injecting - I usually don't bruise, although I have a ton of scar tissue so maybe that's why. I do tend to bleed a lot, though. Do you find the same?

  9. Hey Helen,

    Sometimes I get a drop of blood, sometimes not. Never have gotten a bruise like this before, though!!

    Pony: Thx for the thumbs up on the tummy!

  10. oh my gosh, i still haven't gotten the courage to do it in my tummy!! but something weird did happen with my MTX injection on sunday, my leg SPIT the medicine back out!!! Has this ever happened to you? I had to do a second shot of MTX because sooo much leaked, it was really weird.

  11. Icing? You're supposed to ice your stomach before the injection?? Fascinating. I've never done that - my doctor does my injections (my fingers don't have the dexterity to do it myself) and I've never been iced. Maybe the Humira would sting less if I did? Anyway, my point - and I do have one - is that I usually don't get bruises. Only once in a while when the needle nicks a vein and then they can get pretty interesting (yours is a particularly nice example!). I guess icing your stomach would sort of shrink the veins, making it easier to avoid nicking them?