How to Administer Depo Testosterone

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Syringe needed to inject Depo-Testosterone
Syringe needed to inject Depo-Testosterone (Image: All images courtesy of Drugs.com)

Depo-Testosterone is the brand name of testosterone cypionate, a steroid hormone manufactured by Upjohn and sold in vials containing dosages of 100 or 200 mg/ml. Depo-Testosterone is an oil-soluble, long-acting ester of testosterone, a naturally occurring androgenic hormone found in the human body. It comes in an oil-based solution, and is sold in vials. Medically, it is used for hormone replacement therapy in men who have deficiencies in endogenous-testosterone production.

Things You'll Need

  • Cotton swabs
  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • 1 or more sterile syringes (23 gauge x 1.5 inches)
  • Band-Aids
  • Needle disposal container
  • Surgical gloves

Check to see that your Depo-Testosterone is not out of date and always use a sealed, sterile syringe. Use an antibacterial soap and warm water to disinfect them your hands. Wipe down the needle, vial and the injection site with isopropyl alcohol.

Transfer the solution into a syringe. Start by increasing the air pressure inside the vial. Pull back on the syringe plunger until it is full of air, then stick the needle through the stopper top (but not into the liquid) and expel all of the air. Repeat until you achieve a high enough air pressure in the vial. Take care, as too much air will make it hard to transfer the oil into the syringe.

Thigh injection site
Thigh injection site

Insert a brand-new needle into the vial. Hold the vial at a 60-degree angle and, with even pressure, slowly retract the syringe stopper until you have extracted the desired amount of Depo-Testosterone. Once the liquid is in the syringe, turn it upside-down (so the needle points at the ceiling). Then slowly push on the plunger until you have expelled all of the air from the needle.

Gluteal injection site
Gluteal injection site

Pick your injection site, preferably the buttocks or thighs, as you should inject Depo-Testosterone into the largest muscles possible. Avoid hitting a nerve or blood vessel. Use a different injection site each time you inject Depo-Testosterone to avoid scar tissue buildup.

How to hold the syringe
How to hold the syringe

Hold a heating pad or hot compress against the muscle for up to 20 minutes to minimize pain, risk of infection and potential scar-tissue buildup at the injection site. Or massage the muscle. Also, make sure your Depo-Testosterone is at room temperature, as this will lessen the pain of injection. When you are ready to inject, wipe down the injection site one more time with isopropyl alcohol.

Use your thumb and index finger to pinch together a 2- or 3-inch fold of skin. Hold the syringe like a pencil and at a 90-degree angle to the pinched fold of skin. Then poke through the skin quickly with the needle's tip. Insert the syringe the full length of the needle.

Draw back on the plunger slowly and with even force. If you see any blood enter the syringe, you must withdraw the needle and reinsert it. Injecting Depo-Testosterone directly into a vein or artery can cause serious medical complications. If you don't see any blood entering the syringe, use steady and even force to push down on the plunger until you have expelled all of the liquid.

Remove the needle by following the same path of entry; that is, don't bend the needle on the way out or remove it at anything other than a 90-degree angle to the injection site. Take an isopropyl alcohol-soaked cotton swab and hold it against the injection site. If any bleeding occurs, apply a Band-Aid and an antibacterial gel.

Dispose of the syringe and cotton swabs in a proper puncture-proof container and take it to a disposal site that accepts biological waste.

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