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How to Use Testosterone Cypionate

Written by Author - Authors Medical experts of the National HRT Clinic - August 29, 2016

Testosterone Cypionate Injections

Testosterone cypionate is an androgen medication used for the treatment of Low T in men, as well as for certain types of hormone-specific breast cancer. The information provided here is for males with low diagnosed testosterone levels who need to learn how to use testosterone cypionate injections once your doctor prescribes them for the treatment of Low T.

Regarding how to take testosterone cypionate injection, the administration of this medication is typically via intramuscular shots into the buttock (or sometimes the thigh) muscle. Since testosterone cypionate is administered on average of every 10 to 14 days, depending on the individual’s needs, there should be little issue with avoiding the same spot for each treatment.

Most men give themselves the shot at home, bypassing the need for visiting the doctor’s office or clinic and paying an additional visit fee. The prescribed protocol will include the testosterone dosage, frequency of administration, and how long to take testosterone cypionate for the complete treatment period. After this time is up, the hormone replacement specialist will run additional blood tests to monitor the testosterone levels in the body, and a determination will be made if subsequent treatment is required.

Testosterone cypionate must be supervised by an experienced doctor, preferably an HRT specialist. Testosterone use should not be stopped suddenly, or the dosage changed without doctor supervision. Unwanted reactions could occur in both situations. There is a proper protocol to halting testosterone treatment, and other medications are going to be needed to ensure that the body works optimally to produce its own testosterone.

Prepare Your Testosterone Cypionate

Once you receive your testosterone cypionate and supplies from National HRT, your medication will be kept stored in the refrigerator. Testosterone cypionate is a thick, viscous liquid that must be taken out of the refrigerator and allowed to come to room temperature before use.

An important step in how to use testosterone cypionate injection is in the preparation of the shot. Although you have checked the vial during previous injections, you must always examine it each time for the following:

  • Expiration date – never used expired medication
  • Discoloration – if the color has changed the testosterone has gone bad
  • Crystals or particles – if a gentle swirling of the vial does not get rid of any particles or crystals in the medication, do not use

Once you have completed the vial examination, you will gather all of your needed supplies:

  • Syringe
  • 18 G needle for drawing the testosterone cypionate out of the vial
  • IM needle for injecting into muscle
  • Two alcohol prep wipes
  • Sharps container

When learning how to administer testosterone cypionate injection, it is vital to remember to wash your hands with soap and water before proceeding. Prepare the testosterone cypionate injection by following these steps:

  1. Clean the rubber stopper of the testosterone vial with an alcohol prep wipe and let it air dry
  2. Unwrap a new syringe from its sealed package and uncover the 18 G needle, setting the cap aside for future use
  3. You will now pull back on the plunger filling the syringe with the same amount of air as the dosage of testosterone cypionate that you will be injecting
  4. Holding the vial firmly on the counter with one hand, insert the tip of the 18 G needle into the center of the rubber stopper
  5. Push the plunger slowly in, allowing all of the air to enter the vial
  6. Keeping the needle tip pushed all the way through the rubber stopper, invert the vial so that the liquid completely covers the needle tip
  7. Slowly pull back on the plunger, filling the syringe with the testosterone cypionate until the proper dosage has been reached – this may take some time as the liquid is quite thick
  8. Check for air bubbles before removing needle – tapping syringe slightly to get bubbles to the top so they can be pushed back into the vial
  9. When the proper dosage without air bubbles has been reached, remove needle from vial and recap with needle cover
  10. Remove the 18 G needle from the syringe and replace with an IM (intramuscular) needle

You will now discard the 18 G needle in the Sharps container and proceed to the next section to learn how to give a testosterone cypionate injection.

Where to Inject Testosterone Cypionate

The choice of where to inject testosterone cypionate is an important one. Because this medication is administered intramuscularly, you want to find a spot that you can reach without straining. For example, if you wanted to inject testosterone in the buttocks, you would be better off having someone else give you the shot, rather than trying to twist your body so that you could position the needle at the correct angle.

You may think that a way around that would be to learn how to give a testosterone shot in the hip, but this is an area with less muscle mass and more bone. The injection could wind up hitting a blood vessel or causing increased pain. You will need to have someone else administer the medication is you choose this location, as well.

Some men do choose the option of going to the doctor’s office or clinic once every two weeks, or whenever the shot is due. That is an unnecessary step as it is just as easy – and much more cost effective, to proceed with your injections at home.

Should you choose to inject testosterone in shoulder muscles, you may find that you face the same issue as with the buttocks – it is hard to accurately position the needle. While some people have a problem with this, others may not. You will first want to practice with a similar sized object in your hand to see if you can adequately reach the injection site at the right angle. Again, it is best to turn this task over to someone else for shoulder injections.

A testosterone shot in the arm may work for you, but it is not always the best choice. The recommended areas for intramuscular testosterone injections are the large muscle groups found in the thighs and buttocks.

The thigh injection site is optimal for men looking to perform their treatments at home, by themselves. If you are going to be administering your own shot, this is your best choice as you can sit down and have unobstructed access to your thigh.

You will inject testosterone in thigh muscles called the vastus intermedius as shown in the photo. When looking at your leg, divide the thigh into three horizontal regions. You will be using the outside part of the middle section, the vastus intermedius muscle, as your target.

Knowing what gauge needle for testosterone injection is crucial. You will have already discarded the 18 G needle in the Sharps container, and now you will replace it with the supplied IM needle. The 18 G needle is only for filling the syringe – do not attempt to use it for the injection – the large size could create serious medical concerns. Attach the IM needle and ensure that it is secure before proceeding with the injection procedures in the next section.

Testosterone Injection Procedures

Once you have filled your syringe with the medication, the testosterone cypionate vial can be returned for storage in the refrigerator.

You will now use the other alcohol wipe to clean the injection site area. Once again, let this spot air dry, as well.

Here are the steps for how to take testosterone cypionate:

  1. Uncover the IM needle and set the cap aside for later use
  2. Using a 90-degree angle, insert the IM needle into the prepared muscle
  3. Pull the plunger back gently to make certain that no blood enters the syringe – testosterone should be injected into a muscle, not a vein
  4. The plunger will be pushed slowly until all medication has been injected into the muscle – this may take a little while since you are using a smaller needle and the testosterone is viscous
  5. Once the testosterone cypionate has been injected, remove the needle from the body and replace the cover
  6. Discard the capped needle and syringe in the Sharps container

Your doctor will have provided instructions for how often to take testosterone cypionate and the dosage required. Please follow all directions as provided. If you have any questions, please contact National HRT for further information.

Medically reviewed by   Reviewers National HRT Staff - Updated on March 24, 2021

Please note that the information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.


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  4. Wikipedia