Humira injection site reaction

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 158
   Posted 10/8/2007 1:15 PM (GMT -7)   

I've been on Humira for about three months. Initially I didn't get much of an injection site reaction, but my last few injections have produced a large (about three inches round) red, itchy, raised spot at the injection site. It lasts for about a week or even a bit longer and it itches like the devil. I talked to my doctor about it and he suggested taking a dose of Benadryl before my injection. I did this last time and it held the initial injection site reaction at bay, but a few hours later it was just as bad as it normally is. I've tried ice before and after the injection as well to no avail. Anybody else have problems with injection site reactions and found a way to get around it?


Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 257
   Posted 10/9/2007 6:19 AM (GMT -7)   
Ladybug - I had the same thing happen to me.  Initially for the first 3-4 months I had no reaction at the injection site at all but then I started getting quite a welt and the next day it started itching and lasted about a week.  I was giving the injections in my stomach at that point and started getting tired of the whole itchy thing so this past shot I gave it to myself in my thigh and had no problems.  No lump, no itchiness - nothing.  All I can think is maybe my stomach area had had enough.  Maybe you should try it in a different area?  I always did it in a different spot on my stomach but eventually you run out of stomach. Good luck.  MB

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 67
   Posted 10/9/2007 10:11 AM (GMT -7)   
I used to get that reaction from humira, really sore and red for 4-5 days, but now it has subsided for the most part. I always inject in to my thigh, and sometimes it still gets swollen and red, so much so that I can't wear tight pants! If it's bad, i take benedryl for a few days and continue to ice it.

Concerned mom!
New Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 19
   Posted 10/9/2007 10:42 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi everyone,
My daughter is going to take her first loading dose 10/10, Im so
nervous for her, she hates needles anyway. We bought the pen
WOW w/insuance very very expensive......It the Humira working
for all of you? If so how low before you noticed a difference.She
has only been on predisone/pentasa no other drugs, I thought
this was to soon, but GI states her last option before surgery?

Good luck to you all and God bless you daily :)
My daughter was just diagnosed w/CD on 7/12.
She is currently on predisone which Dr. is weaning
her off. Pentasa and Nexium.

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 257
   Posted 10/9/2007 11:35 AM (GMT -7)   
Humira is definitely working for me.  I have been on it since the end of April.  I noticed a difference right away, then things kind of stayed the same for a while but in the past month things have improved again.  I also decreased my sugar intake in the past month so I am not sure if it was that or the Humira but the Humira has definitely helped.  Just a word of advice to your daughter - let the pen get to room temp and ice the area before you inject.  I found the stomach to be less painful than the thigh but I am very thin so I don't have much extra fat on my thighs.  Best of luck to her.  It really isn't that bad and I hate needles!!! MB

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 67
   Posted 10/9/2007 11:57 AM (GMT -7)   
I've been on it since March, and like MBJOH have found it to work wonders. Dito about icing the area. I do that before and for the whole evening after I do my injection. I inject in my thigh (but that's my fatest area). It stings/hurts, but just for 10 seconds. Good luck and Good health to your daughter!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 544
   Posted 10/9/2007 9:06 PM (GMT -7)   

I have been on the Humira for about 6 weeks...mixed feelings for me.  Certainly it has helped some...I have gained some weight which is good, actually great since I have lost weight almost every week for over a year (over 100 lbs in 2 years).

I am supposed to do shots every two weeks.  I did the first four (the loading dose) in the stomach ...took about 4 minutes and it was over.  the second time was two and I did them in the stomach again....each time my wife gave me the shots using the Pen.  the third series was in my thighs....I did that myself.  Tomorrow night I will do two more....I have decided that the best thing is take the two tomorrow night in the upper part of my stomach...then in two weeks I will do the lower abdomen...then two weeks after that back to the thighs....this way it  will be six weeks before I revisit each area...hopefully that will keep my injection sites from reacting.

dx IBS 1999   UC 2000   CD 2001
Tested BIOGEN TYSABRI (gave me 2 years of remission)
currently on Low Dose Netroxene (started Jan. 19, 2007)...against Dr's wishes, he was pushing for Remicade.  Stopped the Naltrexone July 28th...started Humira Aug 31st, 2007...current dose two shots every other week.
Crohns is currently active and has been since April of 2005
51 yrs old

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2009
Total Posts : 39
   Posted 7/30/2010 10:15 AM (GMT -7)   
I've just taken my 10th week injection and up until now I had no issues but now I am having the exact same problems as you: a big red raised injection site that is itchy as all getout and painful to touch. It has been getting larger but I only took it 2 days ago. I'm going to try to take it in the thigh because I've been injecting myself just in the stomach as it is less painful. Hopefully it works! Claritin seemed to help a bit.

As to the question about how well it works: it has been working WONDERFULLY for me. It's so amazing, I wasn't expecting anything to work after remicade gave me an allergic reaction and I still had symptoms. I thought for sure I was going to have to get surgery.

But then I started humira and I feel GREAT! Sure, I have to avoid certain foods, but I feel like a normal human being again which is so wonderful. All of my old side effects like lethargy, rashes on my face, anemia, etc went away! Gosh, it is so wonderful to only take 1 prescription of pills and a shot every other week.

I hope it all works out for everybody!


Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 884
   Posted 7/30/2010 10:38 AM (GMT -7)   
Ladybugs, try taking the benedryl every day for about a week/few days before and a day or two after your injection.  Also, try taking Zantac along with the benedryl.  My doctor suggested it and I thought he was crazy, but it did take care of the reactions for a long time. He said they don't know why it works but it does.  I'm now just starting back on Humira after being on Cimzia for a year and I did get the reactions yesterday, so I must not have taken the benedryl and zantac long enough. 
Crohn's Disease with Arthritis, Non-Erosive Reflux Disease, Gastritis, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, Endometriosis, Depression/Anxiety 

Elite Member

Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 10404
   Posted 7/30/2010 3:49 PM (GMT -7)   
Everyone, this thread is three years old. How about letting it rest in peace?

Co-Moderator Crohn's Forum.

Medications for Crohn's ~~ Diet and Nutritional Therapy for Crohn's ~~ Dealing with Abscesses and Fistulae ~~

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 884
   Posted 8/2/2010 9:28 AM (GMT -7)   
Sorry, ivy, I just saw Kelly's post and didn't look at the dates on the others. 

Crohn's Disease with Arthritis, Non-Erosive Reflux Disease, Gastritis, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, Endometriosis, Depression/Anxiety 

New Member

Date Joined Jun 2012
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 6/7/2012 2:37 PM (GMT -7)   
I've been reading some of the remarks about injection site reactions.  I began doing these shots in March, and the first three shots were fine.  With each of the next four shots, I a 3-inch red, itchy bump.  I finally called the manufacturer's nurses hotline.  I was told to NOT use an ice cube before giving myself the shot nor to leave the pen out to come to room temperature.  The nurse said this use to be advised, but the company recently made a change, and they are now advising healthcare professionals and patients to give the shot shortly after taking the pen out of the refrigerator.  Of course, none of this made a difference because I still had a reaction.  I administer my shots every two weeks by alternating which thigh I inject.  I haven't worked up to giving a shot in my abdominal area, and now, I'm afraid what it would feel like if I did so and had this red, itchy welt in that area (as it is bad enough on my thighs).  I have tried using an ice cube the next day after my shots (when the reaction usually starts), but it only seems to provide temporary relief.  I have a July appointment with my RA doctor, so I'll ask him for further suggestions.  Good luck to all of you with this problem.

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 73
   Posted 6/7/2012 4:12 PM (GMT -7)   
Give Humira a good 6 months to work. I saw a little improvement after 3 months however, needed a lot more time
Crohn's since 1997, 1 bowel ressection in 2004. Meds: Immuran, Questran, Humira, Vitamin B12, Palafer, Vitamin D, Multivitamin, and Calcium. Buscopan and Tylenol #3 as needed.
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