Insulin Storage Temperature
Insulin is the main form of treatment for diabetes mellitus. It helps control blood sugar levels and prevent episodes of diabetes attacks. It is available in liquid solution and administered subcutaneously. You can get insulin from pre-filled pens, pumps, cartridges, and vials. It can also be rapid-acting, long-acting, and intermediate-acting. But how is insulin stored? What is the suitable insulin storage temperature?
The correct insulin storage temperature for unopened insulin
Insulin pens or vials should have an ideal temperature between 36 to 46 degrees Fahrenheit, and your refrigerator is the best spot to store them. Since some parts of the fridge can be colder, checking the setting first before storing the unopened insulin is necessary.
The ideal spot to place your unopened insulin is near the door shelving. You can also place your insulin on the butter compartment. Avoid putting the medication near the freezer or the back of the fridge to prevent freezing.
How long can insulin be out of the fridge?
Opened or unopened insulin in cartridges or vials can be unrefrigerated for up to 28 days. However, this only applies to room temperature between 59 and 86 degrees Fahrenheit.
If, for any reason, the insulin has been altered for dilution purposes or removed from the manufacturer’s original vial, dispose of the product within two weeks. This insulin may already be deemed unsafe for you.
What is the life span of insulin pens and vials?
Opened insulin, whether in pens or vials, can last about 28 to 30 days from the day you use them. The product gradually breaks down after 30 days despite storing it inside the fridge between your doses.
Note: Some insulin users accounted that their treatment is still effective despite extending the 28-day mark. Additionally, it is day 45 when the medicine loses its full efficacy. However, if you consume your insulin before the 28-day mark, it is totally acceptable.
Things to remember about your insulin treatment?
- Avoid placing your insulin in a very hot location. While leaving your insulin in a hot car is all right, do not let it stay there exceeding 15 minutes.
- Do not place your insulin in the freezer. Frozen insulin is not only inefficient but also unsafe.
- Avoid putting your insulin in your pocket, especially while walking out in the winter.
- Avoid placing your insulin directly in the sunlight. For example, while having an outdoor activity at a summer beach party.
- If you are traveling, do not put your insulin in your suitcase or a bag you will check in. Instead, carry it with you in your handbag. This will be handy, especially if you need a dose of insulin while inside the plane. Make sure you carry the prescription in the same handbag.