Learn How to Inject: Autoinjectors

Its easy for patients and caregivers to learn how to perform a subcutaneous, or under-the-skin injection with an autoinjector.

This type of injection is also called a subq injection, pronounced "sub Q" ("sub cue").

Rheumatologist Dr. Andy Thompson will demonstrate an injection in the video lesson featured below on this page. The lesson is applicable a variety of medications used in rheumatology that are available in an autoinjector.

Subcutaneous Injections

A subcutaneous injection involves poking a small needle just under the skin to deliver medicine into the "fatty tissue" below.

This type of injection does not deliver medicine straight into the blood. It is absorbed by small blood vessels under the skin. This is similar to how medication is absorbed when you take a pill or tablet; small blood vessels in the stomach or bowel absorb the medication.

Parts of an autoinjector

Each syringe has 3 basic parts:

  1. A needle cap (which is removed)
  2. A medication window which shows the medicine
  3. An activator button

Video Lesson

Step-by-Step: How to Inject

There are four basic steps to performing a subcutaneous injection with an autoinjector: