Dosing With An Insulin Pen
Using a pen is quite easy. Once the cartridge is loaded, you simply screw on a pen needle, prime, if needed to clear out any air in the cartridge, dial the desired dose, inject the needle, and press the button to deliver the insulin. If you use a pen with an insulin suspension, such as NPH or a premixed insulin, you will need to gently shake the pen to be sure the insulin is mixed prior to use. Pens are easy enough for kids to use, and are excellent for use at school or while out and about.
Pen needles should be removed after each use to prevent air from entering the cartridge and to prevent insulin from leaking out. There are many different pen needles available, in varying lengths and diameters .
The smallest pen needles are very short and very thin and help minimize the discomfort of injection. Unlike syringes, pens need to be held in place for several seconds after the insulin is delivered to ensure that no insulin leaks out. Syringe users who switch to pens should pay close attention to the injection site and test their blood glucose often as they become accustomed to pen injections.
Dosing increments vary by pen, with some pens starting at 1/2 or 1 unit and allowing 1/2 unit dosing, while others dose in one or two unit increments. While pens offer injection convenience, they don’t allow mixing of multiple insulins, so if you inject short and long acting insulin together , you’ll double your number of injections.
The Majority Of People Reached An A1c Under 7%
In Trulicity studies with other medication, 50% to 67% of patients with an average starting A1C of 8% to 8.6% reached an A1C< 7% across 4 doses.
Select Important Safety Information:
Ask your doctor how to recognize possible serious side effects and what to doLow blood sugar . Your risk for getting low blood sugar may be higher if you use Trulicity with another medicine that can cause low blood sugar, such as a sulfonylurea or insulin. Signs and symptoms of low blood sugar may include dizziness or light-headedness, confusion or drowsiness, headache, blurred vision, slurred speech, fast heartbeat, sweating, hunger, shakiness, feeling jittery, weakness, anxiety, irritability, or mood changes.
Insulin Treatment In Type 2 Diabetes
The decision to take insulin is never an easy one. For many patients, it comes after years of having type 2 diabetes and trying multiple weight-loss regimens, diets, and oral medications. For other patients, the decision to take insulin is made when blood glucose levels are simply too high to control with other drugs.
The good news is that insulin almost always works. Daily injections, however inconvenient or painful at first, can be very effective at controlling blood glucose. Anxious about giving injections? Help is available. If your health care provider prescribes insulin, a trained diabetes educator or pharmacist can teach you how to measure out the proper dose and administer your daily injections.
Why should I use insulin?
With type 2 diabetes, over time, the pancreas is often unable to produce insulin on its own. When that happens, your blood glucose levels will become very difficult to control without daily injections of insulin. Injectable insulin is identical to the insulin made by the body, but can be categorized into two main types: basal insulin keeps your blood glucose stable all day long, even when not eating, while bolus insulin helps your body respond to the quick rise in blood glucose after meals.
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Makes Data Sharing Easier
Sharing accurate data with your medical team makes it easier for them to make more precise insulin dose adjustments, improving diabetes outcomes. Sharing data with clinicians is essential for person-centered therapy that is inclusive and progressive.
Smart devices allow people with diabetes to share information with their medical team in an organized and efficient way.
What Is A Smart Insulin Pen
The new generation of connected insulin delivery devices may help simplify your routine.
A smart insulin pen is a reusable injector pen with an intuitive smartphone app that can help people with diabetes better manage insulin delivery. This smart system calculates and tracks doses and provides helpful reminders, alerts, and reports. They can come in the form of an add-on to your current insulin pen or a reusable form which uses prefilled cartridges instead of vials or disposable pens.
Smart insulin pens are a rapidly growing market. Why? Because they are typically more affordable, easy to use, and offer many benefits and improvements for people who depend upon insulin to manage their diabetes.
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How Does Glipizide Control Blood Sugar
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Pros & Cons Of Using Insulin Pens
Not sure whether using an insulin pen for injections instead of a traditional vial and syringe is right for you? Here are a few things to consider:
|Insulin Pen Pros||Insulin Pen Cons|
|Insulin pens are easy to use compared to using a vial and syringe, making them a popular option for people of all ages who have diabetes and lead an active lifestyle.||Insulin pens can be more expensive than using a vial and syringe, so its important to consult your health insurance provider when evaluating different insulin delivery methods.|
|Small, discreet, and portable, insulin pens can be carried in a pocket, purse, or backpack. People using insulin pumps also keep insulin pens as back-up in the event of a pump or infusion site problem.||Although certain insulin pens come with prefilled insulin cartridges not all insulin pens are compatible with all types of insulin.|
|Insulin pens enable you to measure doses using a dial, making insulin dosing more accurate and efficient.||Insulin pens tend to leave a little insulin in the cartridge, which some may find wasteful.|
|Certain insulin pen brands use color-coding or eye-catching designs to distinguish pens based on the different types of insulin they use, which is especially helpful for individuals with impaired vision.|
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What Is Good About Insulin Pens As Opposed To Syringes
Insulin pens are very easy to use. They are great for young diabetics who need to deliver insulin at school. Furthermore, many diabetics find insulin pens almost painless. They are also portable and discreet, as well as not being as time-consuming as syringes. An accurate dose can be pre-set on the dosage dial, which can be useful for diabetes sufferers who also have impaired vision.
When Should I Use An Insulin Pen
To determine when you should inject insulin, pay attention to the times you check your blood sugar, when you eat and what kind of insulin you are taking:
- Check your blood sugar no more than 30 minutes before you eat.
- If you take rapid-acting insulin before meals, inject the insulin when you sit down to eat.
- If you take regular insulin before meals, inject the insulin no more than 30 minutes before the meal.
- If you take intermediate- or long-acting insulin, inject the insulin at the same time each day.
There is no standard or typical dose of insulin. Your dose will be the amount of insulin that you need in order to keep your blood sugar in good control. Your doctor will prescribe an insulin dose that is right for you.
Recommended Reading: When To Take Basal Insulin
Important Safety Information For Lantus Solostar
Lantus SoloSTAR is a disposable single-patient-use prefilled insulin pen. Please talk to your healthcare provider about proper injection technique and follow instructions in the Instruction Leaflet that accompanies the pen.
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*Eligibility Restrictions & Offer Terms:
Insulins Valyou Savings Program: Sanofi insulins included in this program are: ADMELOG® 100 Units/mL, TOUJEO® 300 Units/mL, LANTUS® 100 Units/mL, and APIDRA® 100 units/mL.
Sanofi Copay Program: This offer is not valid for prescriptions covered by or submitted for reimbursement under Medicare, Medicaid, VA, DOD, TRICARE, or similar federal or state programs including any state pharmaceutical assistance program. If you have an Affordable Care plan, you may still be qualified to receive and use this savings card. Please note: The Federal Employees Health Benefits Program is not a federal or state government healthcare program for purposes of the savings program. Void where prohibited by law.
- LANTUS: Pay as low as $0 up to $99 for a 30-day supply, depending on insurance coverage. Maximum savings apply. Valid up to 10 packs per fill offer valid for 1 fill per month per 30-day supply
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Types Of Insulin Administration With Needles Pumps Pens And Why Insulin Is So Expensive
What does insulin do? Help your body turn food into energy, for starters. When you have diabetes, and youre either not producing insulin or your insulin function is off, all sorts of things can go wrong. From needles to pens to pumps to types of insulin, were here to empower you with clear answers to all your pressing questions.
In This Article:
Alvin Powers, MD, Mihail Zilbermint, MD, and Irl Hirsch, MD
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The Benefits Of Using An Insulin Pen To Manage Diabetes
Insulin pens can make administering insulin tremendously easy for a variety of reasons, says Andrew S. Bzowyckyj, PharmD, CDCES, a pharmacist and an associate professor at Pacific University School of Pharmacy in Hillsboro, Oregon.
First, there is no need for complex maneuvering to draw the insulin out of a vial. In addition, the final dose to be administered is a lot easier to see with a pen because of the relatively large numbers featured in the dosing window, rather than counting tick marks on a syringe. Lastly, many of the newer insulin formulations are now available in unique concentrations, which are unsafe to administer with a traditional syringe because of the need for additional calculations to administer the correct dose. Not everyone prefers to use an insulin pen, but those who do find it easier and much more convenient to use than the traditional vial and syringe. People who inject insulin also find pens to be less painful, more convenient, and easier to use than syringes, according to a review in the Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology.
Despite the higher costs up front, pen injections may save people more money than syringes. A study of low-income Medicaid recipients with type 2 diabetes showed lower overall healthcare costs for those who switched from syringes to insulin pens, because overall healthcare service usage was lower. The study authors theorized that more accurate dosing may have been among the reasons why.
Dont Forget The Needles
Once youve picked your pen, youll need a needle for the tip. Pen needles screw onto the top of an insulin pen. Its good practice to change your needle after each injection or at least once daily. Fresh, sharp needles mean shots that are less painful.
Most brands of pen needles will fit any of the insulin pens. Pen needles come in different lengthsbetween 4 and 12 mmand gauges .
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Different Types Of Insulin Pens
There are two different types of insulin pens:
- Disposable pens contain prefilled insulin supply. Depending on the type of insulin they use, disposable pens are designed to be thrown away either when theyre empty or when the pen has been used for 2832 days.
- With reusable pens, you can dispose of an insulin cartridge the container that holds the insulin once its empty and replace it with a new one.
Note that, with regard to dosage, certain pens measure in half-unit increments for each dose, while others measure in whole units.
Individuals who use insulin pens must also select pen tip needles, which screw onto the top of the pen and are changed with each injection. When choosing pen tip needles for your insulin pen, the American Diabetes Association recommends that you consider both length and gauge , noting that shorter needles are more effective for all body types, and that needles with a higher gauge are typically thinner and less painful.
Be sure to consult your healthcare professional if you need more information about why you have been prescribed a specific type of insulin or pen, or if you need more information about pen tip needle choices.
What About Leakage Concerns Related To Shorter Needles
Some people have raised the concern that short needles will lead to leakage or that they arent suitable for people with larger bodies.
That concern has been debunked and research has shown that shorter needles work for most body types, with no additional leakage.
But if you feel more comfortable using a longer needle, then you should absolutely do that.
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Low Cost Oral Medications For Type 2 Diabetes
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How To Choose The Right Insulin Syringe
Using a syringe for your insulin injections is still the most widely used way of delivering insulin in the United States.
A syringe is a hollow plastic tube with a plunger inside and a short skinny needle attached. You have to use the syringe to draw the insulin out of a vial and then inject it.
You want to choose the right syringe for the type of insulin that you use, and the first thing to check is if the concentration of your insulin matches the syringe.
Its indicated on the syringe what insulin concentration the syringe is for. Insulin concentration is measured in Units/mL and indicated as U-100, U-200, or U-500.
Make sure your syringe matches your insulin concentration or you might end up injecting the wrong amount of insulin.
Secondly, you want to choose the syringe size thats appropriate for you. If you use large amounts of insulin at a time, youll want to choose a larger syringe so that you dont have to cut your doses up in smaller amounts.
- 0.3 mL syringes are for doses under 30 units of insulin and are numbered at 1-unit intervals.
- 0.5 mL syringes are for doses of 30 to 50 units of insulin and are numbered at 1-unit intervals.
- 1.0 mL syringes are for doses of more than 50 units of insulin and are numbered at 2-units intervals.
Finally, you want to consider which size needle is appropriate for you. Just as with pen needles, shorter needles sizes are generally recommended.