Six Essential Tips for Storing Insulin

Here are six essential tips on storing insulin so that it will look after you and stays safe to use. Insulin that has not been stored correctly will not be effective in lowering your blood glucose levels and can lead to a hypoglycemic attack.

If in doubt always consult your GP or health professional. Always check the storage advice given for the particular insulin product you are using in order to abide by the manufacturers instructions.

1Do not keep in hot places. Do not leave insulin in a hot closed car. Heat makes insulin break down and will not work well to lower your blood sugar.

‘When damaged by heat, clear insulin generally becomes cloudy and cloudy insulin becomes grainy and sticks in the side of the glass. Insulin that has been exposed to bright sunlight sometimes has a brownish colour. Do not use insulin that shows these changes. Speak to your GP or healthcare professional if you are unsure.’ Diabetes UK

2Do not keep in freezing places. Never store in a freezer. If insulin is frozen, do not use. You will not be able to inject the insulin if it is frozen. Do not use even after thawing. Freezing temperature will break down the insulin and then it will not work well to lower your blood sugar. Dispose of frozen insulin straight away.

Extreme cold will damage Insulin, depleting its potency and make it less effective in controlling your blood glucose levels. Do not let your insulin freeze during cold weather. Remember if you are out and about with your insulin that the freezing point of water is 0 °C or 32 °F, do not subject your insulin to these temperatures or lower, or it will spoil.

3Do not leave in sunlight. Light can make insulin break down and then it will not work well to lower your blood sugar.

Insulin should be stored in the dark as exposure to sunlight decreases its potency. Never leave insulin out in the sun, whether outdoors, indoors, or in a vehicle. Sunlight can break insulin down and it will no longer lower your blood sugar effectively.

4Never use insulin if expired. The expiration date will be stamped on the vial or pen. Remember if not in the fridge, the date on the vial or pen does not apply. You must throw away after 28 days since outside the fridge.

‘Write the date on the insulin vial on the day you open it or start keeping it outside the fridge. This will help you remember when to stop using it. Throw the insulin away 28 days after opened or since kept out of the fridge.’ Consumer Med Safety

According to The Committee for Proprietary Medicinal Products insulin is like other sterile products and has a proposed maximum in-use period of 28 days.

5Write the date down. Write the date on the insulin vial on the day you open it or start keeping it outside the fridge. This will help you remember when to stop using it. Throw the insulin away 28 days after opened or since kept out of the fridge.

‘According to The Committee for Proprietary Medicinal Products insulin is like other sterile products and has a proposed maximum in-use period of 28 days’

6Inspect your insulin before each use. Look for changes in color or clarity. Look for clumps, solid white particles or crystals in the bottle or pen. Insulin that is clear should always be clear and never look cloudy.

2019-04-30T13:23:42+00:00

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