Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) is a widely studied hormone in the scientific research community due to its various therapeutic applications.
The gonad-stimulating hormone is often manufactured as a lyophilized powder that requires reconstitution with a sterile solvent for injection. As with many other therapeutic hormones, bacteriostatic water is the preferred solvent among qualified researchers for HCG reconstitution, injection, and safe storage.
This comprehensive guide will include all important information on the use of bacteriostatic water and HCG, including their key benefits and ideal pairing.
At the end of this guide, we will direct qualified researchers to the best online source for bacteriostatic water and research supplies.
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What is Bacteriostatic Water?
Bacteriostatic water is a USP solution made of sterile water and 0.9% benzyl alcohol, a naturally derived preservative that prevents bacterial growth. This sterile solution is intended for use as a solvent or diluent of medications and other therapeutic substances destined for hypodermic injection.
Because of its bacteriostat agent, this solution resists contamination for 28 days after initial use, safely providing multiple doses. Unused containers of bacteriostatic water have shelf lives of several years . It is a popular choice for researchers not only due to its extended shelf life but for its low toxicity and minimal interaction with most types of medication and therapeutic compounds. However, it may interact with some drugs and is not indicated for use in neonates [3, 5].
What is Bacteriostatic Water Used For?
The intended uses of this USP solution are:
- To dissolve non-liquid substances such as lyophilized powders that require aqueous suspension and injection.
- To dilute liquid substances to their indicated concentrations before injection.
These are just some of the numerous benefits of bacteriostatic water in research applications:
- Unlike many alternative sterile solvents, bacteriostatic water remains uncontaminated for weeks after it is opened, enabling the withdrawal of many doses from a single batch or reconstitution. This is thanks to its organically sourced preservative agent, 0.9% benzyl alcohol .
- Bacteriostatic water alone does not require refrigeration, and it can extend the shelf life of most solutes when refrigerated after reconstitution.
- Its chemical features offer good solubility with most solutes, and it has few known pharmacodynamic interactions .
- Bacteriostatic water has diverse applications, as it can be used with a range of medications, hormones, and peptides in multiple parenteral injection, including subcutaneous, intramuscular, and intravenous .
Although bacteriostatic water is a winning choice in most cases, there are some precautions to be aware of. These include the following:
- It should not be used in the administration of cerebrospinal fluid injections due to possible neurotoxic effects .
- Researchers are cautioned against the injection of pure bacteriostatic water. Without a well-mixed solute, bacteriostatic water is known to cause hemolysis, the destruction of red blood cells [9, 10].
- Adverse effects can occur, including irritation or infection at the injection site, thrombosis, and pyrogenic reactions. In these cases, cease injections and seek medical attention .
What is HCG?
Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) is a polypeptide hormone. Endogenous hCG primarily affects fertility in women [11, 12]. In men, exogenous HCG is an analog of luteinizing hormone (LH), which stimulates testosterone production and spermatogenesis.
In women, hCG is vital to ovulation and sustaining early pregnancies. Because hCG levels spike significantly in pregnant women, hCG is known as the “pregnancy hormone.” It is produced at its highest levels in the placenta, where it stimulates progesterone output and guides fetal development during the first trimester of pregnancy [13, 14].
Low levels of endogenous hCG are present in men and non-pregnant women but normally have no notable effect. Elevated levels of endogenous hCG in these populations may indicate cancer of the liver, lungs, stomach, or gonads .
Serum hCG levels are considered identifying markers of a healthy pregnancy, recent pregnancy loss, or the presence of certain tumors .
What is HCG Used For?
The FDA has approved several HCG products for the treatment of female infertility and male hormonal imbalance.
While HCG in pharmaceutical preparations has traditionally been sourced from urine samples of pregnant women, recent advances in genetic technology have enabled the release of recombinant HCG formulas as promising alternatives [16, 17].
All FDA-approved HCG treatments are in injection form .
HCG Injections in Women
HCG injections to treat certain cases of infertility in women are designed to mimic luteinizing hormone (LH) and stimulate ovulation, often administered in combination with other drugs. HCG injections are also performed during the in vitro fertilization process to aid successful embryo implantation .
HCG Injections in Men
In its capacity as a luteinizing hormone (LH) analog, HCG stimulates testosterone production in males. Exogenous HCG is indicated for use in adult males to treat hypogonadism and its attendant symptoms such as sexual dysfunction, cardiovascular and metabolic disturbances, depression, and excess body fat.
HCG injections are also commonly used in concert with TRT therapy to mitigate deleterious side effects such as infertility and testicular atrophy . Additionally, HCG is indicated for the treatment of cryptorchidism (undescended testicles) in pre-pubescent boys .
Although HCG has been widely advertised as a weight loss treatment, the FDA states that there is no substantial evidence to support these claims .
Bacteriostatic Water for HCG
While intramuscular injection constitutes the FDA-approved method of HCG administration, and that affording the best hormone bioavailability, HCG is more commonly injected subcutaneously [18, 22, 23].
Dosage schedules vary but tend to include frequent injections, and most marketed HCG products feature multi-dose vials and supplementary bacteriostatic water for reconstitution and injection of lyophilized HCG powder.
Given the need for regular injections that can be stored, bacteriostatic water is the best solvent for use with HCG—and HCG manufacturers agree!
Let’s explore in a little more detail the benefits of using bacteriostatic water for HCG injections. Key benefits include the following:
- Most HCG products are sold as lyophilized powders that require reconstitution before injection. Specialists consider bacteriostatic water to be the safest injection solvent due to its preservative content, which lowers the risk of contamination and infection.
- Given the need to inject HCG at regular intervals, it is ideal to have reconstituted solutions readily available. Plus, most HCG products are sold in multi-dose vials, indicating that storage is necessary. Bacteriostatic water is one of the few solvents that can safely be stored to provide multiple doses without contamination.
Now, we will dive into the proper method for HCG reconstitution with bacteriostatic water. The guidelines are as follows :
- Start by thoroughly washing your hands with antibacterial soap.
- Gather the needed supplies. These include a vial of lyophilized HCG powder, a vial of bacteriostatic water, alcohol wipes, a syringe, and a needle.
- Wipe the bacteriostatic water and HCG vials with an alcohol swab, paying particular attention to the tops where you will insert the needle.
- Insert the syringe into the bacteriostatic water vial and withdraw the required amount.
- Using the syringe, slowly dispense the bacteriostatic water into the HCG vial.
- You may gently rotate the vial to mix the solute, but don’t stir or shake it.
- When the solution is fully mixed, it will appear transparent.
- If performing an injection, follow medical guidelines for intramuscular injection. In some cases, subcutaneous HCG injections may be performed.
- Properly store the reconstituted solution in the refrigerator. This will prevent contamination.
Keep in mind that precise dosages and injection schedules vary. Follow all medical instructions and product indications when using bacteriostatic water in HCG injections.
Where to Buy Bacteriostatic Water Online | 2022 Guide
If bacteriostatic water sounds like a great addition to your research toolkit, you are in luck! The Peptides.org team has combed the internet to find the best online retailer of bacteriostatic water and complementary lab supplies:
This reputable vendor provides not only premium quality bacteriostatic water, but all ancillary items so that you can perform safe, sterile, and smooth HCG reconstitutions and injections in your research. Save yourself the annoyance, time, and money of trying to gather all necessary tools from different stores with the purchase of a deluxe kit from the Bacteriostaticwater.org catalog.
The introductory kit will set you up with all you need, including:
- 10 Large Needles + Syringes Combo (3cc x 21g x 1)
- 100 Insulin Syringes (0.5 cc/mL x 29g x ½)
- 1 Sterile Empty Glass Vial (10mL)
- 200 Alcohol Prep Pads
- 3 vials of Bacteriostatic Water (30mL)
If you want more, try the premier kit, featuring:
- 20 Large Needles + Syringes Combo (3cc x 21g x 1)
- 200 Insulin Syringes (0.5 cc/mL x 29g x ½)
- 2 Sterile Empty Glass Vials (10mL)
- 200 Alcohol Prep Pads
- 5 vials of Bacteriostatic Water (30mL)
Upgrade your research with one of these convenient and all-inclusive sets. To get yours today, click the link below.
Bacteriostatic Water vs. Sterile Water
Many researchers have likely seen sterile water mentioned in literature on reconstituting and injection procedures. At first glance, there may not appear to be much difference between sterile water and bacteriostatic water. They are both sterile solvents that are commonly used for injections. However, it is important to understand that these two solvents are not interchangeable. Let’s explore their shared and distinct traits.
As stated above, bacteriostatic water and sterile water do have some areas of overlap. Both are USP solvents that are formulated to administer sterile injections. They also share similar compositions, as bacteriostatic water is made by adding benzyl alcohol to sterile water.
Some of their applications are shared, too, as both can be used to reconstitute hormones and peptides for multiple parenteral injection routes. Further, neither is safe for solo injection, use in neonates, or intrathecal injections :
In spite of their similarities, bacteriostatic water and sterile water differ quite a bit. They should not be considered interchangeable in their applications.
For example, bacteriostatic water resists contamination due to its 0.9% benzyl alcohol content, while sterile water has no additives and is quickly contaminated. As such, sterile water solutions cannot be stored, in contrast to the extended shelf life of bacteriostatic water solutions, which offer multiple doses. Plus, sterile water is slightly more acidic than bacteriostatic water, and the latter tends to provide better solubility [4, 5, 6].
Upon weighing their formulations, uses, and precautions, bacteriostatic water is the winner. Due to its reduced contamination risk, longer shelf life, and chemical behavior, it is the best solvent for injections overall.
Does Bacteriostatic Water Need to Be Refrigerated?
One of the convenient features of bacteriostatic water is that it does not require refrigeration. Because it has an organically derived preservative, pure bacteriostatic water remains sterile for weeks if opened and much longer if it is sealed.
- Keep vials out of the light and in temperatures of 60-80° F. A cabinet is an ideal space.
- Do not store anything on top of the vials, as doing so could damage the containers and contents.
When bacteriostatic water is mixed with a solute, such as a reconstituted hormone or peptide, it should typically be refrigerated. Consult product indications for proper storage practices.
Does HCG Need to Be Refrigerated?
Before reconstitution, HCG powders should be kept at room temperature (68-77°F).
Reconstituted HCH with bacteriostatic water needs to be refrigerated, as it is less stable. If refrigerated, it remains usable for approximately 60 days. This means you can safely and conveniently source multiple doses from a single vial. However, HCG solutions made with sterile water should be discarded immediately if unused.
Certain formula requirements may vary, so be sure to read and adhere to product labels .
Bacteriostatic Water and HCG | Overall
Bacteriostatic water is an essential item to enjoy the full benefits of HCG injection for research purposes. The sterile solvent reduces the risk of contamination and infection. Plus, it can be stored to save you the time, money, and effort of having to reconstitute HCG powder with every use.
Get the most out of your research with the purchase of a deluxe bacteriostatic water kit from your one-stop online source, Bacteriostaticwater.org.