An awareness campaign on safe insulin injection practices

 Insulin therapy is often a crucial part of diabetes management. Type 2 diabetes patients ultimately require insulin therapy in the course of the disease for effective glycemic control and injection technique remains crucial in the process. To enhance awareness on safe insulin injection practices, a multi-city educational campaign was organised by BD-India with leading endocrinologists on Insulin Injection Day. Insulin Injection Day commemorates the 98th anniversary of first successful insulin administration on 11th January 1922, at Toronto General Hospital, Canada.

At the conference, Prof. Debasish Maji President, Calcutta Diabetes & Endocrine Foundation & Past President, Endocrine Society of India said, “The success of insulin injection therapy and the adherence to it depends on several factors such as a smooth insulin initiation process with counselling that alleviates the fear of needles, the insulin regime, length of needle and the method of administration, It is important to remember that insulin treatment is vital for blood glucose control, and any inappropriate injection skill might compromise the dosage accuracy and its effectiveness. How and where you inject is as important as what you inject with. It is recommended that needles should not be reused as blunt needles can damage tissues and lead to complications. I am glad BD is supporting awareness campaign on Insulin Injection Day to encourage proper use of insulin injections and help patients live a better life.”

Prof. Nilanjan Sengupta, Professor & Head, Department of Endocrinology- NRS Medical College, Kolkata & Vice President, Diabetic Association of India (DAI), West Bengal added, “A good injection technique is vital in achieving good glycemic control and thereby preventing complications in diabetic patients on insulin. If injection devices like needles are used improperly or re-used, it can result in pain with bleeding and bruising and needles breaking off, among other complications. Through Insulin Injection Day campaign by BD, it is equally important to enhance the awareness about appropriate injection technique including sites of insulin injection and site rotation.”

The experts also emphasized that incorrect insulin injection technique could lead to lipohypertrophy, which is a thickened, rubbery swelling under the skin at the patient’s usual injection sites. Lipohypertrophy can lead to poor glycaemic control, hypoglycemia and glycaemic variability.

Some of the recommendations from Forum for Injection Technique & Therapy Expert Recommendations (FITTER) India are listed below:

Some of the FITTER insulin injection recommendations
Site rotation ·      An easy-to-follow rotation scheme should be taught to the patients from the onset of injection therapy.
Needle/syringe hygiene ·         Do not reuse needles. Use a new needle for each injection.
Lipohypertrophy ·         Injection sites should be inspected at every visit. Patients should be taught to inspect their own sites and should also be given training on how to detect lipohypertrophy.
Injection sites ·         Injection should be given at a clean site with clean hands.

·         Prior to the injection, the site has to be palpated for lipohypertrophy and inspected for wounds, bruises, or blisters.


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