Avonex is a drug that is used to treat Multiple Sclerosis. It does not cure Multiple Sclerosis, but there is evidence that it slows down the progression of the disease.
My Avonex prescription comes with 4 individually packed doses (one for each week). It is administered once/week by injection. Some patients go to a clinic to receive the injection, but most patients learn to do it on their own for added convenience.
Avonex Injection Video
Here is a video of my Avonex injection. I have been injecting for approximately 8 months.
How big are Avonex Needles?
There are two different sized needles that can be used:
- 1.25″ needle: provided as the default needle in the package
- 1″ needle: ask your doctor about this option or contact Avonex (this needle is alot less scary)
Do Avonex injections hurt?
Really, its not all that bad. The needle itself does not hurt much at all. Many people use ice to numb the area before the injection. Personally, I find the cold ice more uncomfortable than the quick pinch of the needle, so I no longer use the ice prior to my injection. Also, I’m not sure if the ice actually reduced any of the pain. Try it both ways and decide for yourself!
The most painful part of the shot for me is when the medicine enters the body. There is a slight stinging sensation when Avonex enters the body. It doesn’t hurt too much but it is unpleasant, I’m not going to lie.
To use or not to use the Avonex Autoinjector?
When I injected myself for the very first time, I did not use the autoinjector. I inserted the needle manually under the supervision of a Nurse. My hands shook quite a bit (nervousness), but other than that, it went quite smoothly. Since then, I have used the auto-injector in order to relieve the anxiety associated with administering the shot.
It really comes down to personal preference whether or not you give yourself the shot manually or use the autoinjector. In my opinion, it is worth giving it a try, especially if you are having difficulty giving yourself the shot manually.