Some patients requiring anticoagulation may be able to self-inject low molecular weight (LMW) heparin into the subcutaneous tissue. This allows the patient to remain at home without the need to make an office visit.


Patient selection:

(1) The physician determines that self administration is appropriate for the patient.

(2) The physician or other health care professional is available for medical followup.

(3) The patient has been properly trained in the administration technique.


The drug may be injected using prefilled syringes or drawn up into disposable syringes. The length of the needle is important to deliver drug to the deep subcutaneous tissue.


Administration alternates between the following sites:

(1) left anterolateral abdominal wall

(2) right anterolateral abdominal wall

(3) left posterolateral abdominal wall

(4) right posterolateral abdominal wall



(1) The drug solution is inspected for discoloration and debris prior to injection.

(2) The skin is cleaned and dried.

(3) The skin at the injection site is drawn up into a fold between the thumb and forefinger which is held throughout the injection process.

(4) The whole length of the needle for the syringe is introduced into the skin fold and then the drug is injected.

(5) Remove the needle and dispose carefully. The prefilled syringes come with a needle guard that can be released after the drug has been injected.



(1) Avoid intramuscular injection.

(2) Do not rub the injection site after the injection in order to minimize bruising.

(3) If using prefilled syringes, do not expel any air bubbles prior to the injection in order to minimize drug loss.


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