How to Store and Keep Insulin?

It is well-known that insulin is a protein hormone to reduce high blood glucose levels in patients with type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes mellitus. In order for the drug to work effectively, it must not be exposed to extremely low or high temperatures, nor must it be subjected to sudden temperature changes. If this happens, the insulin becomes inactive and therefore useless. 

How to Store and Keep Insulin?
[image: pexels by nataliya vaitkevich]

Most manufacturers (Eli Lilly, Novo Nordisk, etc.) recommend that insulin products should be kept at room temperature 25-30 ° C for no more than 28 days. In such conditions, the medication will lose less than 1% of its strength in a month. The recommended storage time for insulin is based more on concern for sterility than on potency. 

Insulin supplies can be stored in a refrigerator (storage temperature 4-8 ° C) and the vials or cartridges that are currently in use at room temperature. 

You can store stocks of closed insulin in the refrigerator until the expiration date of the drug. The shelf life/lifespan of closed insulin is 30-36 months. Always start with the older (but not expired!) pack of insulin from your inventory. 

Insulin storage recommendations (in a cartridge, insulin vials, syringe-pen) 

 Check with the manufacturer of this insulin for recommendations on storage conditions and shelf life. The instruction is inside the package; 

• Protect the medication from extreme temperatures (cold/heat); 

 Avoid direct sunlight (e.g., storage on a windowsill); 

• Do not keep it in the freezer. Once frozen, it loses its properties and must be disposed of; 

• Do not leave insulin in the car at high/low temperatures; 

• At high/low air temperatures, it is better to store/transport insulin in a special thermal cover. 

Recommendations for the use of insulin product (in a cartridge, vial, syringe, pen) 

• Always check the manufacturing date on packaging and cartridges/vials; 

• Never use insulin after its expiration date; 

• Examine insulin carefully before use. If the solution contains lumps or flakes, it should not be used. It should be transparent and colorless; 

• It should never be cloudy, form a precipitate or lumps; 

• If you are using an insulin suspension (NPH-insulin or mixed) - just before injection, gently stir the contents of the vial/cartridge until the suspension is evenly colored;

• If you put more insulin into the syringe than required, you do not need to try to pour the remaining insulin back into the vial, this can lead to contamination of the entire insulin solution in the vial. 

Travel tips and storage guidelines 

• Bring at least double the amount of insulin you need for the number of days you need when traveling. It is better to arrange it in different places of hand luggage (if part of the luggage is lost, then the second part will remain unharmed); 

• When traveling by plane, always take all your insulin with you in your carry-on baggage. By placing it in the hold, you run the risk of freezing it due to the extremely low temperature in the hold during the flight. Frozen insulin cannot be used; 

• Do not expose insulin to high temperatures by leaving it in your car in summer or on the beach; Always store insulin in a cool place where the temperature remains stable without sudden fluctuations. For this, there are a large number of special (cooling) covers, containers, and cases in which insulin can be stored under suitable conditions: the open insulin that you are using at the moment should always be at 4 ° C to 24 ° C, no more 28 days; 

• Insulin supplies should be kept around 4 ° C, but not near the freezer. 

Compliance with these simple rules will help you keep insulin effective throughout its shelf life and avoid introducing an unusable drug into the body. 

People with diabetes need insulin regularly. That is why they like to stock up with the medication in advance. Moreover, many stores offer an option to buy a 3-month insulin supply with good discounts. This is beneficial and helps to save money. However, it is crucial you store your insulin correctly, otherwise, you will have to throw all your medications or risk your health or even life. 

We have gathered for you the most practical and general rules on using storing insulin closed and open bottles, insulin pens, or cartridges at home and while you are traveling. Please follow these simple recommendations, and you can be sure you always use a safe product. Take care!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please Leave a Comment to show some Love ~ Thanks