Do's and Don'ts

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How can I avoid problems? 

There are several recommendations concerning insulin injection. Therefore, we have put together all the information you need to prevent as much trouble as possible during your therapy.

Get a fast overview of the most common handling errors with the Do's and Don'ts list below.

Please consult your healthcare provider whenever you have additional questions. They will help you with your injection routines.

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Dos and Dont's Poster
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Needle length

Needle length - do

DO

Choose a needle length and a suitable injection technique. Pinch up for needles longer than 6 millimeter.

 

Needle length - don't

DON'T

Avoid intramuscular injection. It is not only painful, but the insulin will be absorbed irregularly.

Single use

Single use

Single use - do

DO

Use a new pen needle for every injection. 

 

Single use - don't

DON'T

Don‘t use a needle more than once, because it is no longer sterile, the tip gets damaged – injecting hurts more and may cause lipos. Residues may block the needle.

Air shot

Air shot

Air shot - do

DO

Perform an air shot before every injection to ensure that the insulin flow is steady.

 

Air shot - don't

DON'T

Never inject insulin without having checked that the needle is blockage free.

Injection area

Injection area

Injection area - do

DO

Pick an injection area. The site  and the skin should be in good condition. Preferred areas are your outer thighs, abdomen or buttocks.

 

Injection area - don't

DON'T

Avoid using your upper arm. It is rather difficult to reach and you would need a second person for the pinch up.

Pinch up

Pinch up

Pinch up - do

DO

If you pinch up, use your thumb, index and possibly your middle  finger. Gently pinch the fatty tissue underneath the skin away from the muscle and create a skin fold.

 

Pinch up - don't

DON'T

Don‘t squeeze too hard, since you will pinch up the muscle as well. This will increase the risk of intra-muscular injections.

Skin injection

Skin injection

Skin injection - do

DO

Always inject directly into the skin. And remember to always inject into healthy fatty tissue.

 

Skin injection - don't

DON'T

Never inject through your clothes. The silicone finish rubs off, the  delicate tip gets bent, and shreds  of fabric might block the needle  or even enter your skin.

Place the needle

Place the needle

Place the needle - do

DO

When injecting into the abdomen, make sure you keep 2 centimeters away from your belly button.

 

Place the needle - don't

DON'T

Avoid intramuscular injection. It is not only painful, but the insulin will be absorbed irregularly.

Needle insertion

Needle insertion

Needle inserstion - do

DO

Insert the needle all the way to the hub till it is fully inserted. The hub should have skin contact during the whole injection.

 

Needle insertion - don't

DON'T

Never insert the needle only partly. To reach the fatty tissue, the  needle should not be visible while you inject insulin.

Duration of injection

Duration of injection

Duration of injection - do

DO

After the injection, leave the  needle in the fatty tissue for at least 10 seconds. This prevents leakage.

 

Duration of injection - don't

DON'T

Don‘t pull the needle out directly after injection.

Site rotation

Site rotation

Site rotation - do

DO

Change injection spots to prevent lipohypertrophies (short: lipos).

 

Site rotation - don't

DON'T

Never inject into the same spot more than once in a row; the risk of lipos forming is too high.

Disposal with needle container

Disposal with needle container

Disposal with needle container - do

DO

After injection, dispose of the  needle straight away according to local regulations. Use the outer needle container to do so. 

Disposal with needle container - don't

DON'T

Don’t recap the needle to reuse it. This is no protection and it is no longer sterile. And you might hurt yourself, since the needle shield is small.

Disposal with sharps collector

Disposal with sharps collector

Disposal with sharps collector - do

DO

Use a medical sharps collector such as the Omnican® box or Medibox® to ensure a safe disposal of every needle.

 

Disposal with sharps collector - don't

DON'T

Don’t collect the needles in  bottles or cans for disposal.  Such containers may break or be punctured. An uncapped needle puts everyone at risk.