Vitamin B-12 Injections

The pharmacist at the hospital is one in a million. We are so fortunate to have her on our campus. We had a good one before he retired (drat it! I want to retire, too!!) and we were dreading who might replace him. However, we hit the jackpot. She is great.

My ex-PCP had told me it was okay to use the expired vial of B-12. I was hoping he was right because there was a lot in it. I wanted a second opinion so I snagged the pharmacist on her way out one day. She cautioned me that the injectable cyanocobalamin that expired in 2007 was definitely too old and should be discarded. She offered to do it for me if I brought it in.

When I went to get it out of the box I had it stored in, I discovered it was the vial I had been using all along! I may have been shooting myself in the leg for nothing. Surely I got some good out of it, I hope, I hope.

The other vials I have are dated March 2011 and February 2012. There’s no problem with the latter but I did wonder about the former. I was assured I could safely use the older vial a couple of months past the expiration date. I used it this morning but I’ll take it in to be disposed of and start using the 2012 vial next Sunday. There’s no way to know how much is in it because I don’t know how full a full one is. All I know is, it will do me until I can find another source.

The next question was the temperature range it can tolerate. Since she was on her way home, I didn’t press the matter but told her to let me know when she found out. Several days later, she took me into the pharmacy and showed me an insert with the temperature range highlighted. The minimum was 59 degrees F with the maximum being 86 degrees F. I breathed a sigh of relief. My house never got any cooler or hotter than that.

I would prefer using methylcobalamin instead of cyanocobalamin because the body has to convert the cyano to methyl but that’s not an option. The methyl injectable has to come from a compounding pharmacy and there isn’t one close enough. My body will just have to do the work and be happy in the process. I also understand that the methyl is rather thick and a much larger gauge needle has to be used for the injection. While I’m not squeamish like I was at first, that might give me pause.

On Sunday, my Google calendar is supposed to send me an email to remind me to shoot up. This morning, I’d already taken care of it by the appointed time and it’s a good thing. The reminder still hasn’t hit my inbox.

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