Diabetes Forecast

2012 Aids for Insulin Users

Taking insulin isn't the most natural thing in the world. Injections require hand-eye coordination and manual dexterity. Fortunately, there are products that aim to make taking insulin less intimidating.

Some of these aids can help you if you have vision problems, by magnifying markings on insulin or helping to draw a dose. Other products are designed for those with shaky or weak hands, by automating injection or helping to steady a needle or vial. Then there are products for people who just don't like needles. If you're among them, there are aids that can hide the needle, create a diversion from pain, or reduce how often you need to inject yourself.

The goal of all these products is the same: to make taking care of your diabetes as easy as possible, so good health isn't hard to come by.

This patch-like device reduces the number of times needle injections are necessary. It is inserted into the skin at an angle of 20 to 45 degrees with a needle as the guide. Once inserted, the needle is removed, leaving a cannula under the skin. The shallow angle of insertion makes it suitable for children and others with little tissue under the skin. Injections are made into a plastic tube that lies flat against the skin and must be replaced every three days or less. Available by prescription only.
For: Needle anxiety

MMJ Labs

This vibrating bee-shaped device reduces the pain of insulin injections by distracting the user. It has a cold pack on the back and is placed near the injection site prior to injection. The combination of cold and vibration can diminish the sensation of the needle.
For: Needle anxiety

I-Port Injection Port
Patton Medical Devices

This button-shaped device cuts down on the frequency of needle injections. It is inserted into the skin at a 90-degree angle with a needle as the guide. Once inserted, the needle is removed and a cannula remains in the skin for up to three days. Insulin is injected directly into the port. Available by prescription only.
For: Needle anxiety

Phone Monocle

While it was originally designed to magnify the screens of cell phones, this soft plastic band can also wrap around any insulin pump to make the screen more readable. The band's magnification window, available with an optional antireflective coating, increases the size of type up to 2X. An accessory called Merlin's Window can increase magnification further.
For: Vision problems

Syringe Magnifier

This device clips onto any standard syringe barrel to magnify its markings by 2X.
For: Vision problems

This allows a blind or visually impaired person to fill a syringe with the desired amount of insulin. A syringe is placed in Count-a-Dose so that the needle inserts into an insulin bottle, located in the device's bottle holder. Then, with each click of a dial, a unit of insulin is drawn. Count-a-Dose has places for two insulin vials, which are distinguishable by touch. It works only with BD Lo-Dose syringes, type U-100, size 1/2 cc, 50 units.
For: Vision problems

AmbiMed Inc.
This clear plastic tube fits over the barrel of a syringe, magnifying its markings by 2X. Insul-Eze fits most syringes and insulin bottles.
For: Vision problems

BD Magni-Guide
This clear plastic tube fits over the barrel of a syringe, magnifying its markings 1.7X. The needle end of BD Magni-Guide fits snugly with Eli Lilly insulin vials, which helps with stability while drawing insulin. (Insulin vials from other manufacturers may not fit properly.)
For: Vision problems

Securitee Blanket
Regato Enterprises
Like a cozy, this product fits around an insulin vial to make it easier to grip and more unlikely to break if dropped. Available in two sizes, depending on insulin type.
For: Dexterity problems

AmbiMed Inc.
Inserting a loaded syringe into Inject-Ease completely hides the syringe and needle. The tip of the device is pressed against the skin, and then a button on the other end is pressed to automatically inject the insulin. Spacer rings can be used to vary the injection depth. It is designed to work with BD syringes.
For: Dexterity problems, needle anxiety

Safe Shot
This device guides the plunger of a syringe. It can be preset to ensure that a person draws the same insulin dose each time.
For: Dexterity problems, vision problems

Autoject 2
Owen Mumford
This aid automates insulin injection with a variety of syringes. After securing a loaded syringe inside the Autoject 2, you can deliver insulin with the push of a button and without the needle being visible. Additional features include a safety mechanism that prevents accidental firing, adjustable needle penetration depth, and an indicator that changes color when injection is complete. An alternate model, the Autoject 2 EI, has an additional feature that allows a user to know by feel when an injection is complete.
For: Dexterity problems, needle anxiety, vision problems

Injection Safety Guard
This attachment fits over the cap of an insulin vial, creating a barrier that protects the hand holding the vial from accidental needle sticks.
For: Dexterity problems

VialDock Inc.
This clear plastic tube fits over the barrel of a syringe, magnifying its markings 2X. It clamps down on the cap of the insulin bottle to increase stability. VialDock fits Eli Lilly vials best, but was designed to accommodate other vials as well.
For: Dexterity problems, vision problems



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