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More On Abscesses

For an overview of abscesses, check out our earlier article. In this article, I will give a little more information on avoiding abscesses. Remember that abscesses are no joking matter. Left untreated, they can cause the loss of a limb and even death.

Ways to Avoid Abscesses

  1. Use a new syringe every time you inject. If this is impossible, clean your syringes well before reusing them (next week I will post an article on how to do this).
  2. Use clean cookers (spoons), water, and cotton. There is a strong tendency for people to reuse their cottons because they think they are losing heroin when they throw away a used cotton. While this is true to some extent, very little heroin is actually lost. Instead, the cotton is filled with junk that is not only useless, but which can be harmful. The cotton is used to filter these things out; reusing a cotton defeats the purpose of using one in the first place.
  3. Wash your hands.
  4. Clean the injection area with alcohol.
  5. Avoid injecting into areas where veins branch.
  6. Make sure you are in a vein well before injecting. Abscesses only occur when the user misses the vein.
  7. Most Important: Once you have an abscess, leave it alone. Don't inject into or around it.

by Dr. H © 2002
Last Modified: 10 January 2004


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