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Type 1 Injection Site Issues

09/11/2011

  • Narrator:

    A familiar scene for anyone with type 1 diabetes: No matter how hungry, checking blood sugar comes first. Pain is a big issue. Not just with finger pricks, but with injection sites. More tips to avoid injection pain:

  • Brunilda Nazario, MD:

    First and foremost is to make sure that your insulin is at room temperature. Secondly, if you are applying a little topical alcohol, make sure that it evaporates. Because if it’s not you are injecting alcohol into the skin, and that can be a very painful reaction. The third thing is, make sure that your muscles are relaxed when you are giving yourself the injection.   That tenseness will only cause you to be a bit more heightened to that sensation of pain.

  • Narrator:

    Proper injection techniques lessen pain and bruising, and patients are then more likely to rotate injection sites, a key step to reducing permanent and unsightly scarring.

  • Nazario:

    The other thing I tell patients is when they inject themselves, you don’t want to go in, inject, change the angle, and then come out at a different angle because you’re tearing the skin. That’s gonna cause pain.

  • Narrator:

    And scarring.  But for some, it’s inevitable. 

  • Jeffries:

    The pump seems to cause more scarring than the shots ever did. The needles are a little bit bigger, they are staying in there a little bit longer, you’ve got a catheter in there rather than a small little shot,  so that’s where I started noticing the scarring. So it’s kind of just something you have to accept. It’s like the woman with the C-section scars, it’s just kind of that’s what -- you pick your bathing suits appropriately. ... Well, I guess we could always have a worst disease. There are plenty of them out there.

  • Narrator

    For WebMD, I’m Sandee LaMotte.