I see two issues regarding the shelf life of dry hCG reconstituted with preservative free normal saline: sterility and potency.
First, sterility. There is no preservative in the NS. With careful sterile technique and strict refrigeration at 33-38F, I am hoping to get a month out of it. I am coming up on my first month now and there has been no signs of skin irritation or redness that might indicate bacterial growth. So far, so good.
Next, potency. I assume that the hCG polypeptide chain will undergo slow hydrolysis at refrigerator temperature and lose potency over time, but how much? I have no idea. I have thought to increase the dose 10% per ten days, or something like that, but really I would be just shooting from the hip. What have others done? Anyone have any knowledge about the shelf life of peptide chains floating in NS?
I have no idea what the shelf life of HCG is when made with NS. I always use BA water to make my HCG. When HCG is reconstituted with BA water the refrigerated shelf life is up to 80 days. The insert says 60 days, but 250iu’s EOD comes out to 80 days, and others have told me 80 days so I chose not to worry. I have been following this protocol for a couple of years now and have had zero trouble.
As far as sterility goes if you are diligent about sterilizing the top of the vial before you draw out of it, sterility problems should be non existent. The advantage to BA water is; as long as things are sterile and “bug free” to start with, the BA will prevent anything from growing in the vial. Once again, using NS may or may not be an issue.
BA = benzyl alcohol?
I used normal saline (preservative free) because that is what came in the kit. I assumed that pH and other solutes in the water might affect drug stability, so I opted to use the same diluent that came in the kit. Glad to hear you can keep it fresh for up to 80 days using bacteriostatic water. A pharmacist told me 30 days max. with bacteriostatic water, but that is probably conservative.
I mixed 10,000u hCG in 4 cc of NS in a syringe. I keep it in the fridge, the syringe wrapped in aluminum foil. To use, I remove the needle, draw out 0.1 cc into a 1 cc syringe, and inject that subcu. I take care to not set the storage needle down and to not allow the open storage syringe to contact anything other than the new (sterile) needle of the injecting syringe.
I’ve got plenty left, but I’m going to pitch it out at one month. I’ve got a new supply of 5,000u strength that I’ll mix up fresh and use for the next month. It isn’t that expensive. It would be a shame to find out it loses its potency after a period of time. I’m going to figure on a one month shelf life unless I find out differently.
Chime in if you know differently.
How about you just buy a bottle of bacteriostatic water for the next batch and keep it longer like the rest of us do? The insert in my stuff says 60 days, and guys like BBB will tell you 80 days. I have never had injection site issues at 80 days, so I don’t worry about it.
There are some here that like to use the minimum dilution when mixing HCG, but I see it as a potential problem and here’s why: the lower the volume of water added, the higher the amount of HCG is lost in the end of the syringe ratio wise. Granted there is very little liquid left in the end of an insulin pin, but it’s there none the less; especially at higher strength ratios. I know in my 1ml regular syringes there are .02ml’s always left in the end of it, and maybe even worrying about an insulin pin isn’t necessary. Just my .02…