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What Is Insulin Pen?
What Type Of Insulin Comes in Pen

Despite the variety of diabetes treatment options, the insulin pen remains the most widely used insulin therapy among people with type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes to control blood sugar levels. Insulin pens are currently the most popular diabetes treatment device due to the simple and accurate method to inject insulin. In addition, an insulin pen can be used for different types of insulin and in combination with other treatments, such as pumps. Often shy diabetics or those who often take part in sports activities prefer syringe pens rather than a pump.

Although there are many models and types of syringe pens on the market, most of them can be attributed to one of two categories.

Reusable Insulin Pens

Reusable pens require the installation of an insulin cartridge, which usually contains 300 units. When the cartridge is empty, remove it and replace with a new one. A cartridge does not have a specific lifespan; it will depend on the amount of insulin in each cartridge, your requirement, and external factors such as exercise and nutrition. On average, the cartridge can be used for a week, but if the cartridge has been at room temperature for more than 28 days, discard it.

Disposable Syringe Pens

Disposable pens are prefilled insulin devices. They are more convenient than reusable pens as there is no need to refill the cartridge, which can be time-consuming, especially if you are in a hurry. Although the pen is pre-filled with insulin, you still need to attach the needle to the end of the pen before each injection. Due to its ease of use, most people with diabetes use disposable syringe pens. Their only small drawback is that they are usually more expensive than reusable pens, so keep that in mind when making your decision.

Advantages and Disadvantages of an Insulin Syringe Pen vs. Vial and Syringe

How to administer insulin is your own decision; what works for your friend may not work for you due to your lifestyle.

To help you make the right decision, here are some of the benefits of insulin pens:

  • The insulin pen is discreet and easier to carry, giving you more freedom on the go;
  • Greater social acceptability;
  • Ease and speed of use - especially when it comes to disposable syringe pens already filled with insulin;
  • Insulin doses accuracy when administered;

and the disadvantages of insulin pens:

  • Often more expensive than syringes;
  • Dose of insulin is not as accurate as a pump;
  • Pumps are better at lowering HbA1c1 levels;
  • Insulin pump treatment requires infusion set to be injected only 2-3 times per week compared to an average of more than 100+ injections per month.

Why Use an Insulin Pen?

Currently, there 3 methods of administering the insulin on the market: insulin pens, insulin cartridges, and vials. Which one to choose? It is an individual choice, which depends on your lifestyle, personal preferences, and of course, insulin type. Most of the brands (Apidra Solostar, Adlyxin, Byetta, Humalog Kwikpen, Lantus Solostar, Tresiba Flextouck, Victoza, etc.) offer such form of release as insulin pen because, in most cases, the pen is a faster and more convenient way compared to cartridges or vials to inject the needed insulin dose wherever you may be: at home, in the office, on a trip.

Consult with your doctor, and after the medicine prescription, you may discuss the available forms of this medication and which one may be the most suitable and convenient in your case. There are no universal recommendations for diabetes management, just try it out and see how it will work for you!


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