From Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA:
My son is 5 years old, Type 1. He developed diabetes at 2.5 years. My question is, What is the proper way to store insulin? We have so many different ways, e.g., refrigerator, cool dark place. And what is the shelf life? We had a problem in the past when we kept the insulin in the refrigerator. It (the R) got cloudy and had particles in it. We called the manufacturer and they said not to refrigerate. We are so confused and can not get any answers. Everybody has a different solution. We just want to make sure that we are not hurting my son in any way!
The data sheet inserts for vials and for disposable pen devices state:
". . . should be stored between 2 and 8 degrees C and should not be allowed to freeze. When in use ... may be kept at ambient temperature e.g. in pocket or handbag (purse) for up to a month. Should not be exposed to excessive heat or sunlight. The pen in use must not be stored in a refrigerator."
The latter comment probably relates to the fact that cold insulin tends to hurt more when injected.
[Editor's comment: If a bottle that should be clear shows a cloudy appearance, don't use it. Take it back to the drugstore for a free exchange. WWQ]
Original posting 28 Apr 97
Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:08:52
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