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It runneth over



I wish I could say the PIO shots were getting easier or that my ass was now numb from nerve damage, but it is not. I think I’m building up some scar tissue now because some injection sites are tougher than others to get the needle in. The Professor pokes around and tries to find a soft spot, but sometimes it is no use – the entire outer upper quadrants of my cheeks are now hard, lumpy and, shockingly, visibly swollen. It’s gnarly.

That said, the shots are over quickly and I’m learning how to alter my gait to minimize the painful cheek wiggle. I am looking forward to Tuesday’s ultrasound and the discussion of how we will start weening me off these bad boys in the coming weeks. Hopefully the end is near. Preferably an end that includes a take home baby in 8 months.

Last night I flopped on the bed with my ice pack to numb my rump and the Professor set to work preparing the injection. We have a system where he states what he is doing and I repeat the step. This keeps us from missing vital steps like cleaning the top of the vial or aspirating before injecting.

Professor: “Cleaning the top of the vial.”

Belle: “Clean that vial!”

Professor: “Removing the 21 gauge needle and putting on the 20 gauge needle.”

Belle: “Big ass needle on.”

Professor: “Drawing the dose. 2 CCs.”

Belle: “Ugh, 2 CCs still seems like a lot.”

Professor: “Removing the 20 gauge needle and putting the 21 gauge needle back on.”

Belle: “Thank gawd. Don’t poke me in the ass with a 20 gauger.”

It was here that I got distracted by a giant clump of cat fur that floated over the bedroom floor and started an internal dialogue  that completely tuned the Professor out. “Ugh. I should vacuum more,” I thought. “But I’m pregnant. I think vacuuming is bad for pregnancy… If vacuuming is bad for pregnancy then you probably should not be doing yoga in the morning. Awe snap.”

Professor: “Hey, are you listening? I’m swabbing the injection site.”

Belle: “Yeah, I’m totally paying attention. You wipe my ass buddy.”

Professor: “Ok, injecting on the count of three. One. Two. Three.”


In goes the needle.

Belle: “Good stick today! Barely felt it!”

Professor: “Aspirating.”

Belle: “Aspirating.”

Professor: “No blood…..(terribly long pause)…… Fuck.”

Fuck is the one word you do not want to hear when someone has a 1.5 inch 21 gauge needle shoved in your ass.

Professor: “I forgot the gauze.”

And then he did the WORST THING YOU CAN DO when injecting someone in the ass. He looked away. Behind him. And he moved the needle around. Quite a bit.

Belle: “Just do the damn injection. DO NOT TRY TO REACH GAUZE RIGHT NOW!”

But the damage was done. The Professor’s eyes returned to my butt and he commenced to inject. Thankfully the pain was minimal, until he took the needle out. You know what that little bit of needle wiggling did? It hit some blood vessels and when the needle came out we had a blood bath.

Belle: “Oh gross. The blood runneth over my butt cheek.”

Professor: “FUCK FUCK FUCK. I think I’m ruining your shirt… And your underwear.”

Belle: “HAHAHAHAHAHAAHA! Just get some damn gauze, man!

The moral of the story for those receiving the PIO shot: Do not zone out while your husband is preparing the injection.

The moral of the story for those giving the PIO shot: NEVER look away from the needle.

Despite the blood bath, I’m pleased to report that there is no real bruising this morning. I only hope all the oil did not rush out with the blood. I think this is pretty unlikely, though, as the oil was way down in my rump and 2 ccs of PIO is quite a bit. I’m sure I have plenty to spare floating around in my body.

Has anyone else hit a vein while getting or giving a PIO injection? Gnarly, isn’t it?


Post a comment
  1. Mary Ann #
    October 31, 2012

    Been there, done that! I’ve even had some of the oil come out- it burns! Something that helped me was heat, not cold. I would rub the syringe in my hands for like 30 seconds before injection to warm up the oil. Then I would go for a walk after the shot- to move the muscle and the oil around. Then I would apply a heating pad for about 30 minutes. This really helped lessen the bruising and knots. When one side got really bad I would give it a break and just take the pain in one side for a few days.
    I was weaned down to 1cc at one point (that felt like nothing after 2ccs for weeks), and then at 10 weeks I came off all meds. Does your RE test your levels? If so, then you will probably go through changing doses. If not, then you may be on the meds through 12weeks or so. At least that’s what I’ve learned from chatting with others.

  2. October 31, 2012

    I can’t relate to your experience but great post for Halloween!

  3. JJ #
    October 31, 2012

    Yes, crazy amounts of blood ruined my underwear and hit our brand new sheets. Lots of fun! The other night my husband blew out the syringe and oil went everywhere. That was lots of fun too! Especially since I got poked twice that night.

  4. 35life #
    October 31, 2012

    You’ve got me squirming in my seat over here! Yuck! No experience with PIO but I’ve heard plenty from my sister’s experiences. No thanks! 🙂

  5. October 31, 2012

    Your narration is hilarious! No PIOs here my RE has me on crinone.

  6. Vanessa #
    October 31, 2012

    I’ve just taken the matter into my own hands and now do the shots myself! It requires some awkward twisting, but is actually less painful. Never had major bleeding, except for the time when I was flicking air bubbles out of the syringe and accidentally flicked the entire needle into the air and it landed in my knee. Not so cool. 🙂

  7. October 31, 2012

    Ok – that’s not funny, but at the same time, really funny.

  8. October 31, 2012

    Yep. We had a couple bloody shots that were a little scary. I couldn’t remember the aspirating step to check for blood, even after reminding myself to not forget when I would start preparing the medication.

    Sounds like a good system…when there aren’t fury distractions.

  9. October 31, 2012

    I am in my 8th week of PIO shots. I have to administer them to myself, my husband refulses to do it. When the nurses showed him how to do it he blinked looked at me and said ” I will throw up if I have to do that to you” and walked out of the room

    I have hit a vein at least 4 times. The first time it was right as my husband was walking in the door and because I was alone in the house, I didnt close the bathroom door. Right as he walked in, I hit a vein it sprayed all over the wall, the floor, and ran down my leg. He stopped in his tracks, stared and threw up all over the floor. I told him “you will have to clean that up honey Im going to be busy in here for a while”

    Every night at 7pm pacific, I try to see a spot on my butt that isnt bruised or hurting. In the first few weeks I used a heating pad at night to help it absorb. Consider using one, it helps a lot.

    • jak #
      October 31, 2012


    • Vanessa #
      October 31, 2012

      Oh. My. God. Funniest thing I’ve ever heard!

  10. October 31, 2012

    That’s friggin’ hillarious! Not that you were in pain, but the conversation itself. Very visual. LOL 21g??? My RE (even though I don’t do the PIO/PEO shots) sends 25g needles…..YIKES, you are brave!

    Happy Halloween!
    Bree 😉

  11. October 31, 2012

    Yes and it is the worst!

    You know, we don’t aspirate first. Maybe we should. Hmmm…

    We have a similar conversation and I have found myself saying, “good shot, Baby,” after many of the PIO’s. Glad we’re not the only ones 😉

  12. whatrhymeswithinfertile #
    October 31, 2012

    Yup…We have had the blood bath, and one time my hubby hit a nerve or somehing and it hurt like hell! I don’t miss that part…

  13. October 31, 2012

    I haven’t had to use PIO shots yet but we when I was doing my IUI cycles my husband was injecting orgalutran shots to prevent early Ov in my thigh and he nicked a nerve and I bled out all down my leg to my foot!

  14. stupidstork #
    October 31, 2012

    I blame the 60+ year silly rumor that vacuuming is something anybody should be doing. Vacuuming is bad for everyone and that is a scientific fact.

    Hope your patootie feels better!

  15. October 31, 2012

    I’ve had a few heavy runs, one time the blood flew out of my ass in an arch and landed on the floor about 2 feet away. Gory. I use a heating pad after the injection and 12 hours later and try to massage a bit. Seems to help the lumps and tenderness. Also, inject slowly.

  16. October 31, 2012

    My husband was actually wonderful at giving shots. But once he had to take a business trip and I had a friend give me the shot…she did something weird and I had a knot for like a week (but i didn’t want to make her feel bad so i didn’t say anything). Another time I took a trip w/ my mom and she wasn’t very good either so I just figured out how to do them myself.

  17. November 1, 2012

    One time my husband stuck the needle in and it hurt a lot so I said “ow!” and he pulled the needle out again. Had to be stuck twice!!!

  18. November 1, 2012

    Boo, I just wrote out a whole comment and m iPad flickered out and I lost it….anyway, I feel our pain, this round of PIO my husband and I thought we were all veteran like and didnt re-read the instructions. We both FORGOT that you draw up with the big needle and shoot with the small. Needless to say, it wasn’t the small…he shot me with the 18 gauge! YOW! Holy hell balls, it hurt. Bright side is now we will never forget and the 23 gauge is like a fine silk thread. O-O. I’ve been reading your blog for a while and just wanted to wish you and the Professor the best of luck! I hope you see strong, strong heartbeats”

  19. WTW #
    November 1, 2012

    Wow, this makes me glad I’m on vaginal progesterone instead! I don’t think I could handle 21 gauge shots into my butt every night! I’m too much of a baby!

  20. November 1, 2012

    This post made me laugh. There are worse things than PIO, but it definitely sucks! Cheers to us and our lumpy asses!

  21. November 1, 2012

    Oh yikes this sounds awful. I think that Crinone sounds like heaven compared to this!

  22. November 2, 2012

    I had to share this one with Ian. We loved it! I used to run blood drives, so I know this could not possibly have been messier than the time I had to bandage a poor donor after an inexperienced tech stepped on her line and pulled the needle from her arm. Not a fun report to write.

    Just make sure the Professor washes his hands first so if it happens again he can apply pressure even if he forgets the gauze. And blood comes right out with hydrogen peroxide.

  23. November 2, 2012

    Yeah…we’ve had similar experiences. Honestly though, that needle is in there so hubby should be able to leave it in and go grab the gauze, come back and it will still be sticking out. I had my husband do that once when he forgot to have tissue ready. I also walked around with a needle sticking out of my butt once when I had to do it myself…well it was more of a hop. And my needle was a 2 inch!
    Good story, thanks for the laugh!

  24. November 3, 2012

    I am going to have my Hubby read this before he gives me a PIO shot! I will be starting next week. My insurance will cover the nurse coming twice and then the Hubby or my Dr has to do them.

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