Help with Insulin/syringe math!!!

  1. Hi all!
    Am desperate for some help. A particular questions has been plaguing my fellow classmates and me. Our teachers presented us with a question in class that we can't seem to make sense of. The question was:
    If you were to draw up 5 units of U-50 insulin in a U-100 syringe, how much would you draw up?
    Now, I know that technically you should only draw up insulin with a syringe calibrated to the same concentration of insulin (use a U-50 syringe with U-50 insulin, U-100 syringe with U-100 insulin, etc.). Ignoring that fact, how much would you draw up? I was so confused by the answer that I didn't even bother to write it down, so I don't remember what the answer was. Can anyone answer, and explain that answer, to me?
  2. 2 Comments

  3. by   liveyourlife747
    From what I could find online, u 50 is a 1/2 strength insulin. So 5 units of u 50 would be 2.5 units of u 100, at least that's what I'm thinking. Not sure if its right. I haven't run into having to draw up u50 insulins. We have u100 on our unit.
  4. by   tokebi
    U-50 insulin contains 50 units in each mL, and so 5 units would be 0.1mL.

    U-100 syringe is calibrated such that each unit equals 0.001mL (100 units in 1mL). You need to draw up 0.1mL, which would be the 10-unit mark on this syringe.

    Or, as previous poster said, U-50 insulin is half strength of U-100 insulin. So, you'll need twice the amount -- so you need to draw up to 10-unit mark instead of 5-unit mark.