June 1, 2023

This is a patient education video for patients who are prescribed an insulin pen. It provides important information so that patients can understand how to correctly administer insulin using an insulin pen

This video will walk you through the steps necessary to administer insulin with your disposable insulin pen you may be using any of the insulin pens pictured here insulin pens come in several different styles depending on the type of insulin that you are prescribed the information in this video applies to all disposable insulin pens first let’s review the guidelines

For storing your insulin pen it is important to not store your pens in warm places such as in the car or in direct sunlight when you fill your prescription at the pharmacy you will receive a box that contains five insulin pens take out one pen and leave it at room temperature for your use do not store opened insulin pens in the refrigerator keep the remaining pens

In the refrigerator until you need them unused insulin pens that are stored in the refrigerator are good until the expiration date stamped on the box it is important to make sure that the pens do not freeze once it is open an insulin pen can be used for 10 14 28 or 42 days depending on the type of insulin that it contains this chart shows how long the different

Types of insulin pens can be used after they are opened and stored at room temperature you should throw away an open pen once it is empty or after it has been opened for longer than what is recommended whichever comes first if you are unsure about how long you can use your pen before it needs to be discarded please check the instructions that come with your pen

Be sure to always have a spare pen available in case you lose or damage the pen that you are currently using it is helpful to refill your insulin pen prescription before the time that you need it so that you will always have an extra pen available now that you know how to store your insulin let’s review the parts of your insulin pen there’s the cap the label the

Dose adjustment dial and the injection button once the cap is removed you will see the needle attachment point and the insulin reservoir window in addition to a prescription for your insulin pen you will also receive a prescription for pen needles from your doctor you will need to use a new pen needle each time you need to inject insulin with your insulin pen now

We will review these steps that you should complete for each insulin injection we will go through six main steps the first step is getting everything ready obtain everything that you will need for the injection you will need your insulin pen a couple alcohol swabs or cotton balls moistened with alcohol a new pen needle and a hard plastic or metal container with a

Lid you should wash your hands with warm water and soap before each injection next look at your insulin pen check the label to make sure that it is the type of insulin that was prescribed to you also check the expiration date on the side of the pen before you give your injection remove the cap of your insulin pen and set it aside you will put it back on your pen

Once you are finished injecting your insulin it is important to check the insulin window of your pen to make sure that your insulin is safe to inject for most types of insulin such as those shown here the insulin should be clear and not discolored there are some insulins such as the mixed insulins that are supposed to be cloudy and white in appearance make sure you

Talk with your doctor nurse or pharmacist or track with your insulin pen instructions so that you know what your insulin should look like no matter what type of insulin you are using you should not see any solid particles in your insulin cloudy types of insulin should be mixed before use to mix a cloudy insulin put the pen in a horizontal position and gently roll

It between your palms ten times then turn the pen up and down ten times check the insulin window again to make sure the insulin is evenly mixed and appears cloudy white without any clumps remember this mixing step is only necessary if you use a cloudy insulin the second step is attaching your needle to your insulin pen take an alcohol swab or cotton ball moistened

With alcohol and wipe the needle attachment point take a new pen needle and remove the protective seal attach the needle to the pen by pushing the needle straight onto the pen then turn the needle in a clockwise fashion until it will not turn anymore remove the outer cap and keep it you will need it again after you are done giving your injection remove the inner cap

And throw it away the third step is priming your insulin pen priming your pen is an important step that helps to make sure that there are no air bubbles in your insulin and that you will receive your full dose at the time of your injection to do this turn your dose adjustment dial to two units now turn your insulin pens so that the needle is facing upward tap the

Insulin window to help any air bubbles move to the top of your pen while keeping the pen facing upward push the injection button all of the way in you should see insulin coming out of the needle tip as you push the injection button if you do not see any insulin come out of the pen needle redial another two units and push the injection button in all the way again

If no insulin comes out after three tries attach a new needle and repeat this step the fourth step is selecting your dose turn the dose adjustment dial to the appropriate dose that you need in this example we will be injecting ten units of insulin if you accidently turn the dial too far simply turn it back to the dose that you need the fifth step is injecting your

Insulin decide where you would like to make your injection you can choose from your upper arm abdomen hip or upper thigh you can use this same general area for each injection but you want to stay at least one inch away from your last injection site any scars and your belly button once you have selected your injection site wipe the area with an alcohol swab make

Sure to allow the area to dry completely so that the alcohol does not cause your injection to burn gently pinch the area of skin unless your doctor or diabetes educator gave you different instructions and insert the needle at a 45 to 90 degree angle depending on the instructions provided by your doctor or diabetes educator to deliver your dose push the injection

Button in the whole way keep the injection button pushed in and slowly count to 10 insulin continues to flow out of the needle for up to 10 seconds after you have pushed the injection button now remove the needle from your skin if you bleed at the site of the injection then press down gently on the injection site using the alcohol swab or a piece of gauze do

Not rub the area the sixth step is disposing of the needle you should dispose of your insulin pen needle in a proper manner after each injection pen needles cannot be reused and insulin pens should not be stored with the pen needle attached put the outer needle cap that you had set aside earlier back on your needle now unscrew the cap and needle by turning them

In a counterclockwise fashion the needle will come off with the cap you should dispose of your needle in a sharps container like the one pictured here you can purchase a sharps container from your local pharmacy you can also make your own sharps container by using an empty metal coffee can with a lid or an old laundry detergent bottle label the bottle with the

Words sharps and do not recycle when the container is full tape the lid down and throw it out in the regular trash now put the cap back on your pen and store it in a safe place until your next injection when you get to the end of the insulin gabor there may not be enough insulin to inject your entire insulin dose if you find that you are unable to turn the dose

Adjustment dial to the dose you require do not force it your insulin pen is designed to stop you from selecting a dose that is higher than the amount of insulin remaining in your pen for example if you need to inject 50 units of insulin but only 20 units are left in your pen you will not be able to turn the dose adjustment dial past 20 units when this occurs you

Have two options the first option is that you can inject the amount of insulin that is left in your pen and then use a new pen to inject the remaining amount of your dose your other option is to discard this pen and use a new pen to inject the entire dose that you need now let’s review the six main steps that are involved with giving yourself an insulin injection

First get everything ready obtain everything you need to make your injection wash your hands and if you have a cloudy insulin then gently mix it second attach the insulin pen needle to the pen third prime your pen fourth select the appropriate dose of insulin that you should inject v in jack your insulin don’t forget to hold down the injection button for at least

The count of ten before removing the needle and lastly dispose of your insulin needle in a proper container you by following these steps with each injection you will be successful and confident in your ability to use an insulin pen you

Transcribed from video
How to use your Insulin Pen – 2015 By PittPharmacy