Advice from Joslin diabetes educator: How to use an insulin pen

Diabetes educator Kristi Shaver, of Upstate’s Joslin Diabetes Center, appears in a 9 1/2-minute video tutorial about how to use an insulin pen. If you or someone you care for has diabetes, the first important step is to make sure you clarify with your health care provider the amount of insulin and how often if should be administered.

Shaver starts the process with freshly-washed hands. She notes that the abdomen is the best area for insulin to be injected, though there are other acceptable areas. (Just avoid lumps, bumps, bruises and scars, and stay away from the belly button.) Also, use a different site for each injection.

After demonstrating the needle preparation, and how to “dial” in the proper number of doses, Shaver instructs: “Hold your pen as if you are making a fist over it.”

She uses model skin to show just how to inject an insulin pen. “Push down all the way, and count to 10.” And then she shows how to properly dispose of the needle.

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