Injecting - Syringe Micron Filters for safer injections

Discussion in 'Opiates & Opioids' started by timothy, Apr 1, 2010.

  1. timothy

    timothy Newbie

    Reputation Points:
    May 25, 2009
    Well after looking around a little on this forum, I seems that there is little information about syringe micron filters. With the permission of Captain Heroin, I present to you the Syringe micron filter FAQ. The original FAQ contains pictures but I could not post pictures until I get 50 posts.

    Micron Filtering FAQ
    by Captain Heroin

    What is micron filtering?

    The micron filter is utilized to ensure sterility and safety of intravenous drug use. For many pharmaceutical tablets which are desirable for injection depending on the individual (Ritalin, OxyContin, Roxicodone, Dilaudid, Morphine Sulfate, Suboxone, Subutex, Dormicum, etc), the use of a micron filter is necessary to remove unwanted inactive ingredients. Some inactive ingredients like talc (for example, which is present in Ritalin and OxyContin, among many other pills) are best kept out of IV solutions, due to the fact that it ends up in swim's lung eventually.

    Over time, if You continues to inject pills, it is better to micron filter, so as to avoid the build up of tablets' inactive ingredients into swiy's body.

    Why micron filter?

    There are several case studies of such individuals, who received medical attention due to injecting binders/filler. one example involves a successful lung transplant due to talcosis of the lung. The patient acquired talcosis of the lung because they injected enough talc within Ritalin tablets.

    What will You need?

    1) Whatman Sterile 0.2 µm PVDF Micron Filter. There are many others that will work and that are cheaper but whatman are highly regarded.

    2) Luer Lock Needle Tip
    Any gauge will do

    3) Luer Lock Syringe
    (Size varies on how much solution You is preparing at once)

    4) Bacteriostatic Water; 0.9% benzyl alcohol
    (Solutions that are going to be used within a day or so don't necessarily need a preservative, but for the most part, any solution that You is planning on using for a week or two should have a preservative such as benzyl alcohol).

    WARNING : Do NOT inject bacteriostatic water by itself. Intravenous injection of Bacteriostatic Water for Injection without a solute may result in hemolysis. You can read up on hemolysis.

    5) Rubbing alcohol pads.
    (To sterilize the surface of pre-sealed vials)

    6) Vial for storing swiy's newly created solution. For this tutorial, swiy's going to use a pre-sealed vial, such as the one that the bacteriostatic water is being stored in (pictured below; so you can see the rubber stopper). You can also use a media bottle for this purpose though using a vial is a lot more convenient. If You do not want to use a bacteriostatic water bottle, or cannot (one doesn't need to use all 30mL to open one up), then You will also need an extra pre-sealed glass vial (clear or amber).

    7) Pills/Drugs. Obviously, last but not least, You will need your own pills/drugs to micron filter. Bacteriostatic water is not safe to inject by itself. Feel free to choose any pills/drugs You like to micron filter.

    How does You Micron Filter? - The Procedure

    1) Remove luer lock syringe from packaging. Pull the plunger back. Insert pills. Replace the plunger.

    2) Sterilize the stopper of the bacteriostatic water. Attach needle tip to the syringe, insert needle into bacteriostatic water vial. Draw back desired volume of bacteriostatic water. Remove the needle from the vial.

    3) Replace the needle tip with a micron filter. Shake the syringe until the pills have dissolved. *

    4) Slip on a new luer lock needle tip to the end of the micron filter. Sterilize the stopper of the vial You wishes to store your solution in.

    5) Push the needle through the stopper of the vial and push down the plunger, slowly but surely. Be careful not to exert too much pressure.

    6) When complete, carefully remove the needle from the vial. Store the needle and syringe safely for exchange, and discard the used micron filter.

    * Depending on what pills You are using, You might want to pre-crush/split/filter them before this step.Swim must note, unless You is micron filtering Subutex or Suboxone, it is strongly recommended you pre-crush your pills. This method with backloading un-crushed pills will take some time for other, much smaller, harder to dissolve in water whole pills. It may take up to 15-20 minutes, or even longer. Some pills are designed this way, so to save You the frustration, just crush them up if you're not absolutely sure shaking them in water will help them dissolve in a few minutes. You can also wait to replace the needle with the micron filter until after the pills have dissolved, but I would be careful shaking about a large gauge needle in the air. Or, You can re-cap the needle with the plastic guard so as to protect the sterility of everything. These are all great ideas.

    ** If You is using a media bottle, You doesn't need to waste another needle tip - just secure the micron filter over the mouth of the media bottle.

    Now that You has read all of this, it's likely You will want to repeat what swim's done here. So it naturally begs the question,

    Q) Does swim need bacteriostatic water?
    A) If You plans on creating a solution for more than one shot, then yes. If You is just preparing a single shot with a micron filter, there's no need for it. Sterile water (bacteriostatic water is sterile as well, it just has 0.9% benzyl alcohol to maintain sterility over time, as a preservative) by itself is just fine for a single shot. Keep in mind I has used tap water for IVing for over a whole year and I had also used a lot of the 5mL tubes of "sterile water" they hand out at the needle exchange I go to. They expired in October of 2005. The liquid would be stored for up to two days outside of its original container before I injected it. So overall, it's hard to say whether one "needs" bacteriostatic water. But why risk it, and end up having an infection because bacteria grew in swiy's non-bacteriostatic solution?

    Q) What do you mean 0.2? What's PVDF? What does 25mm mean?
    A) Whatman is the manufacturer of the micron filters I use. People use others, different brands of micron filters, but the positive reviews I has read about Whatman brand micron filters led swim to acquiring these. 0.2 µm refers to the pore size of the filter. It's one of the smallest sizes of micron filters that are out there (the smallest I've seen is 0.1 µm). 0.2 µm micron filters are necessary to remove harmful inactive ingredients in pills, like talc (for example) or microcrystalline cellulose. PVDF is a type of filter media, which is good for oil based and water based solutions. Nylon filters are ideal for oil based solutions only, and PES filters are ideal for water based solutions only. Swim determined that PVDF filters are ideal for intravenous drug use. You can read more about filter types. 25mm refers to the size of the filter (how much surface area the solution has to pass through). Ideally, the larger the surface area, the quicker filtration. However, Whatman brand filters have pre-filters built into them, so that 25mm is large enough for most purposes. Other filters which are larger may not be as high quality or filter the solution as effectively due to a lack of a built in pre-filter.

    Q) How many times can I use a single micron filter?
    A) Once, ideally. They are guaranteed sterile, but once You has used them, they are no longer sterile. As time goes on, bacteria can build up inside micron filters. So, You should create a bulk quantity of solution with a single micron filter. This is the safest way to utilize micron filters. The liquid inside of the filter can be building bacteria as time goes on, and You wouldn't know this. There's liquid that's already passed through the filter. So yes, a micron filter would filter out bacteria, but You can't ensure there isn't bacteria that's growing on the other side of the filter. This is the problem with letting a micron filter sit around for another use - this is an inherently bad idea. Only use your microns once. Prepare more solution if You is going through them quicker than You expected.

    Q) What can get through a micron filter? What does a micron filter out?
    A) You'll need to do your research. What we know is that talc, microcrystalline cellulose, fungal spores, most bacteria, and many inactive ingredients in pills are filtered out with a micron filter. Viruses are too small to be filtered out with a micron filter, unfortunately. This means You cannot use micron filters to remove viruses from an IV solution (let's say someone made a huge dope shot, only need 1/2 of it. If You knows they have Hepatitis or HIV, You cannot use a micron filter to make that other half of the dope shot safe for You to use, unless You is going to risk exposing him/herself to the virus). I wanted to make this perfectly clear for anyone who might inquire about this in the future.

    Q) Is micron filtering the only precaution that You needs to take?

    A) No, many pills today have all kinds of ingredients like waxes and others to prevent abuse. You should do their research on a pill they wish to inject. For most pills and street drugs, it is recomended to not heat the solution because this allows waxes and other inert ingredients to pass through a micron filter.

    Q) Can swim make a heroin solution?

    A) Yes and no. A solution can be made but heroin in solution degrades to 06-MAM. Concrete numbers about how long this takes don't exist to my knowledge, but it is recommended not to keep heroin in solution for longer than a day or two with out significant degradation.

    Q) Where can swim purchase this equipment?

    A) More than likely You won't have access to this equipment but You shouldn't have to much trouble finding these things online with the help google.

    This concludes Captain Heroin's Micron Filter FAQ. I will continue to add to this if there is other information I feel should be added. Feel free add anything to this that you feel may be help. If people are going to take risks they should do all they can to minimize them.
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2010
  2. LostControl

    LostControl Silver Member

    Reputation Points:
    Mar 10, 2010
    from Canada
    Great post on micron filters. The biggest issue is going to be getting them. It's not the sort of thing you can go to a pharmacy and purchase. Usually they are used in hospitals, and other places that need to filter solutions before injecting them. With many addicts re-using needles (that's why so many free needle programs have been set up over the years), it's hard enough getting some addicts to just use a fresh needle every time. Getting one to use a micron filter is going to be impossible.

    Still, I have to say, however, that if I was ever to inject myself, I'd make sure to filter using something like this. Filtering through cotton just wouldn't do it for me. I think micron filters are a fantastic idea - and it's too bad that they aren't more readily available to the public at large.
  3. Spucky

    Spucky Palladium Member

    Reputation Points:
    Feb 9, 2009
    from japan
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 10, 2017
  4. OpiLuvnOldLady

    OpiLuvnOldLady Silver Member

    Reputation Points:
    Jan 2, 2010
    from U.S.A.
    She knows that in some other countries, besides the US, that some of the needle exchanges will hand out wheel filters. She really would like to see it become standard equipment that's given out at ANY exchange.

    It's very true about them not being readily available at pharmacies/chemists. If one is interested, then there's always medical supply places or even your well known online auction site. They're not terribly expensive when purchased in bulk.

    One would probably want to be filtering as large of a batch as they can, all at once. Then the dose could be divided up for use throughout the day, rather than having a filter sitting around wet and being re-used later. But this has already been addressed in the Q&A's.