Hi - just a simple question for those of you that deal with this on a daily basis.
My dog is diabetic -no big whoop - he is getting 2.5 U of Humulin N bid. It is okay for me to predraw his syringes and if so how far in advance can i draw them? It seems it would be less chaotic in the am if it was already drawn.
Mar 3, '10
I would recommend consulting the pharmacist about the shelf life in the fridge when out of vial...
Mar 6, '10
I have always been told you can prefill for a week, but no more as the insulin deteriorates in the plastic syringe vs. the glass bottle after that. Obviously keep the syringes in the fridge.
Mar 7, '10
It's fine to prefill syringes with NPH, home health nurses have been prefilling for their patients who are blind or have dexterity problems for eons. It's important to remember with NPH that the suspension must be mixed as evenly as possible before filling syringes or the concentration will not be uniform. NEVER shake NPH vials, but roll between the palms, then tip upside down/right side up several times until fully suspended. When using the pre-filled syringes, warm by rolling between your palms or let come to room temp, then tip the syringe several times to let the precipitate suspend again. This will prevent clogging of the needle, and ensure that all the suspension is delivered and none is left in the syringe.
Mar 9, '10
It's actually the syringe manufacturers who recommend against prefilling syringes, as they cannot guarantee the stability of the insulin in the syringe for a period of time longer than to fill, then administer. Do people still do it? Yes. Although the advent of insulin pens has made insulin administration much easier for many patients and thus, prefilling unecessary. However there are still cases where prefilling is done. I don't know if pens are available for the animal population, and if they are, they would likely be more expensive. But they do make insulin administration quite a bit easier.
May 18, '10
thanks everyone! It makes mornings go smoother when i don't have to draw the doggy's insulin (NPH, btw) and get lunches ready and breakfasts and kid dressed and etc etc
May 20, '10
Read the inserts from the medication or ask pharmacy, but the insert on MY insulin (Lantus) states the medication is to be disposed in 28 days, no matter how much remains in the vial. It does not have to be refrigerated, only kept in "comfortable temp". Once it is opened, it will expire in 28 days refrigerated or not, in another container or not. Check out mfg. recommendations.