Have an insulin needle question

  1. Has anyone ever heard of a diabetic using the same needle twice? Once for their morning 70/30 and once for the pm dose? A nurse advised a family member of mine to do this because insurance does not cover the needles and they are in a finacial bind. I know in the hospitals we don't do this for the obvious reasons but I can see both sides to this one... what are yall experiences?
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  2. 14 Comments

  3. by   Fiona59
    Yes, I've heard of diabetics doing this, even with good insurance coverage. For both the syringe/needle and for the insulin pens. Their logic is they are the only ones using the needle, so they feel "safe". The needle does become duller with each use. The max. anyone's ever admitted to me is two uses of the same needle....
  4. by   RNsRWe
    Like fiona said, it's their needle and their own contamination, although I suspect they DON'T at least wipe off the needle with alcohol before jabbing themselves again

    Anyway, if they can deal with the more painful second stab, they aren't going to die from it.
  5. by   LisaRn21
    Ihave done some research and they have also said the needle can break off in the patient if used more than once.. but I was thinking if they use it like 5 tmies lol I think he was only trying to use it like 2 times so its one needle a day .
  6. by   markjrn
    There are plenty of diabetics out there who reuse needles and lancets, and have been doing it for years and years. I don't think they're about to change. lol
  7. by   P_RN
    As long as the needle is still sharp, and they only use it for insulin on themselves it's perfectly OK. I wouldn't recommend it in a hospital though.
  8. by   Creamsoda
    My boyfriend, has juvenile diabetes since he was 9, hes 21 now, totally insulin dependent. He uses the insulin pens, but he will use the same needle for a few days in a row that I know of, pretty much untill it gets dull and it starts to hurt. Its stays "clean" as the cap is put on and not further contaminated. And like the other posts said, its only his germs. Its not a money or insurance thing, its just that he doesnt want to keep changing the cap and doesnt feel a need to every single time with 4-6 inj. a day and being active and out and about. I could only ever forsee a problem with it in when he gets older and the long term effects of diabetes starts happening like with poor circulation, I could imagine just one poke happening to get a minor infection that just wouldnt heal and eventually turn into some nasty wound.

    Cher
  9. by   cookie102
    working home health, i have seen many pts not only use the same needle several times, but we once had a pt that refused to give his insulin any other way but straight thru his clothes, i thought i had seen everything, and there was NO changing him!!!
  10. by   Jules A
    Quote from cookie102
    working home health, i have seen many pts not only use the same needle several times, but we once had a pt that refused to give his insulin any other way but straight thru his clothes, i thought i had seen everything, and there was NO changing him!!!
    For some reason this strikes me really funny! Oh well, whatever works, right?:wink2:
  11. by   nurse4theplanet
    Yeah, we were made to be aware of this during our home health rotation. I mean what is really worse, reusing the same needle with the small chance of infection, or not taking your insulin and ending up in DKA with shot kidneys and rotten toes?
  12. by   cookie102
    Quote from Jules A
    For some reason this strikes me really funny! Oh well, whatever works, right?:wink2:
    you are so right , it is rather "funny", when i saw him do it, what could i say and not offend him in his own home, which is a bigger in home health, always having to remember we are "quests" in a patients home!!
  13. by   AdelaideChic
    Sometimes injecting through clothing is much easier. Think about ballerinas, it would take ages to pull down a leotard, pull down the top of tights, to reach the abdomen. Injecting through the leotard is much quicker!
    Needles apparently have a slicone type coating, to help them slide in as such, which is removed once used, meaning it is more painful second time around. Still, if you have one syringe on you (or pen needle), thats what would be used regardless!
  14. by   JB CC-RN
    I have known people who do this who need to save a buck or two who are on a fixed income.

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