I have had a nurse come once a week to inject the Avonex because I am scared of needles and the side effects were horrible, chills, fever, pain, etc... I had every side effect that you could imagine, it got so bad that I was ready to stop the medication. But my dr has put me on copaxone, I don't know how I am going to be able to do this myself - is it hard? Are there any side effects?
Copaxone has an autoinjector that you can use to inject yourself. I also had bad side effects from Avonex and went to Copaxone. I am now on Rebif. Do you have a family member or friend willing to help you inject daily? It is very simple, fast, and you don't even see the needle go in your skin. I injected myself with Avonex and then, I injected Copaxone with and without the autoinjector. Good luck. Let me know if I can help.
I've been on copaxone for 7 months. The auto injector is very helpful. I too was very scared at first - cried thinking about it. The only challenge for me is with some sites (hip & arm) I am not as confident with getting the injector at the right angle etc so my husband has been doing those. If I need to I can do it though. I always do the stomach and thighs. I've even done the injection twice without the injector and was surprised to find out how the needle goes in without any pain at all and there is no resistance to the needle going in. The only discomfort is from the medication itself which sometimes hurts a little for a few minutes afterward. I usually use a warm pack before injection and sometimes a cold pack afterward if I have any pain. The only other problem is the injection site reactions - rash type - but they are getting to be less now. Copaxone has a support group called Shares Solutions that helps with everything including sending a nurse to help you get started.
I've been self injecting Copaxone 8 years now. It's a breeze. Self injector works well. Make sure your alcohol is dry on your skin. It's what causes burning. Choose an area that is fatty if you have any. I'm overweight so it's easy to do this. Also look for an area free of veins. You learn these things as you go. The shared solutions nurses line is always available if you need help.
I've been on Copaxone since December. My only side effects were pain at injection sight for a few minutes after and an itchy welt 2 days after injections, both of those side effects are lessening as time goes on. Bottom-line, it's managable. Have Copaxone's Shared Solutions send a nurse to train you if they can, get the Autoject from them (free) and it's so easy. I was terrified at first but I was bound & determined to do my shots myself and conquer it, it wasn't long before I got used to it. You can do it :-)
I have JUST switched from Avonex to Copaxone less than 3 weeks ago myself. Avenox wasn't working according to the MRI. No more Avonex flu! Thank God! Copaxone has a TINY needle which you can't even see in the autoinjector. Instead of an inch and 1/4 needle in the muscle, it's only 1/4 of an inch on top of the skin. WHAT A DIFFERENCE. I couldn't take Avonex anymore. Jabbing myself in the leg once a week was too much for me. Now, I inject, ice for 10 minutes and get on with my day. No flu! I've read that many, many people have incredible itching at the injection site, but I don't get that. This will get easier; you'll see once you get into the habit. I hope Shared Solutions sets you up with a mentor. It was a wonderful thing for me to hear someone else's experiences with Copaxone.
I have been taking copaxone for 2 years and the only side effects are soreness around the sight, black and blue, sometimes itchy at site, but in general it has been good... Yes it is easy to inject. You will receive injection thing that you put the syringe in--sometimes it goes really slow but all in all its worth it. It does suck to have to do it daily... I have specific spots for each day of the week rotating in each area.
If you are afraid of needles, than Copaxone will be much better for you. Avonex has a 1" and 1 1/4" needles and gets injected into the muscle but Copaxone uses a very small thin needle and just goes into the skin. I had no side effects whatsoever with Copaxone for the first 10 years, only recently am I having trouble with itching. But if you use the injector, it is quite simple and I'm sure you will be able to do it yourself because you never see the needle. Try it, I really think you will be quite pleased with it.
You can totally do it yourself. I just recently switched from Avonex to Copaxone b/c of side effects and not getting used to stabbing my self in the leg. The Copaxone needles is super tiny and comes with an autoinjector, so most of the time I don't feel the needle going in. The med kinda burns for about 1 minute after injects and it looks like you got stung by a giant mosquito, but that goes away within 24 hours. I have a little bruising also. Shared Solutions, the patient support for Copaxone, also sends a nurse out to teach you how to self inject.
You should go to the website to learn more about Copaxone: www.sharedsolutions.com
I just took my first shot of avnex I did it my self wasn't hard for me just because I waited so long to try to do something about this horrible disease. I had 50 times more pain then I already have been in, vomitting for 12hrs. I hope it desnt happen everytime but if it slows this down ill think its worth it. So even though I haven't took the other med I would like to give advice don't think of it as a shot think of it as hope that tmarrw you may feel better than today and the day after that even better. I will keep you in my thoughts (don't know if you are religious but I will say a prayer for u to give you strenght,hope and wellness as soon as I stp typing this) good luck best wishes to you and your family
I have been self injecting for a year (+) now and find no problem or pain at all with the Copaxone. Stats show that after 10 years 90% of copaxone patients are walking w/o assistance. It is hopeful. DO NOT be afraid of the neddles, i was for two days and then saw how easy it was. Good luck and here's to more drugs coming out this year.
I have avoided MS drugs for 17 years out of fear of needles.It was silly and I took a big chance. I started copaxone 2 days ago. A nurse came to my house and taught me how to use the auto inject. The needle is very small, and it barely even hurts at all. This morning I did it myself for the first time, and it was easy and practically painless. I'm real happy my neurologist pushed me into this. The needle is a joke, I can't believe I was afraid of it for so long:)
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