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Drugs & Supplements

Instructions for Medicines You Inject (Insulin)

Remember:

  • Always check your medicine type and expiration date before leaving the pharmacy.
  • Once opened, the medicine must be used in the number of days instructed by your health care provider. Make sure that unopened medication is kept refrigerated until its expiration date.
  • Keep your opened medicine at room temperature (not too cold or too hot).
  • Do not use medicine that contains lumps, is discolored, or has been frozen.
  • If you use a pen device, consult your health care provider about storage.
  • Dispose of pen needles, syringes, and lancets (for blood sugar testing) in a hard, plastic container with a screw-on lid. Call your local city hall for disposal guidelines. Sharps containers might also be purchased at your local pharmacy. If the same injection site is used over and over again, you might develop hardened areas under the skin that keep medicine from being used properly. To avoid this problem, follow these instructions.
  • Move the site of each injection. Inject at least 1½ inches away from the last injection site.
  • Try to use the same general injection area at the same time each day.
  • Ask your doctor, nurse, or health educator which sites you should use.
  • Keep a record of which injections sites you have used. Note: The abdomen has the faster rate of absorption, followed by the arms, thighs, and buttocks.

Note: The abdomen has the faster rate of absorption, followed by the arms, thighs, and buttocks.

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This information is provided by the Cleveland Clinic and is not intended to replace the medical advice of your doctor or health care provider. Please consult your health care provider for advice about a specific medical condition. This document was last reviewed on: 1/29/2013...#11727