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Insulin overdose

Discussion in 'Diabetes Discussions' started by Anne Mary Crosby, Aug 4, 2008.

  1. Anne Mary Crosby

    Anne Mary Crosby New Member

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    recently saw a program (fictional) where a man was attempting sucicide by overdosing on 3 ampules of insulin. Just curious as to whether this has any basis in reality. If it does is this programme irrisponsible as it may give viewers ideas they might not otherwise have had.
    UniqueJenny34 likes this.
  2. sugarless sue

    sugarless sue Legend

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    It is certainly a possibility! Especially if they do not happen to be a diabetic.There have been one or two cases of murder where insulin has been used and as it is a natural body substance,very difficult to detect.However it is not the sort of thing you can just buy over the counter from the chemist.
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  3. hanadr

    hanadr Senior

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    You need quite a lot of insulin to overcome the liver's sugar dump and glucagon reactions in a non-diabetic, but then you can kill with an injection of air to the bloodstream, that's why you have to clear bubbles from syringes and pens. Thereare loads of things that can kill.
  4. Siobhan

    Siobhan New Member

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    Like in the Omen when the nanny killed Damiens mum, injecting air into her arm. There was the story line in Corrie a couple of years ago when the diabetic girl smashed all here insulin and ate tons of sugar and slipped into a coma and died,
  5. Fallenover

    Fallenover New Member

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    This is completely true, 4 years ago i tried ending my life by overdosing on insulin, i am a type 1 diabetic, and ended up putting myself in a coma. if it wasnt for the fast action of my mum and the hospital stuff, i wouldnt be here today. it was a bad chapter in my life, and thankfully its over now, but the dangers of overdosing on insulin, whether intentional or not, if a very real thing. sorry if i dampen anyones mood! :)
  6. Marz Barr

    Marz Barr Regular

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    an insulin overdose can not only kill it could also leave some one brain damaged
  7. Thirsty

    Thirsty Regular

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    Indeed.

    Psychiatrists used to induce diabetic comas in schizophrenic patients using high doses of insulin. Nowadays they stick to slamming a kazillion volts through their heads.

    Much fun to be had by all concerned.
  8. Buachaille

    Buachaille

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    Was there not a case in the past year or so when a nurse who was jealous of a friends baby almost succeeded in killing the child with insulin
  9. DiabeticGeek

    DiabeticGeek Regular

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    Sorry people, but the pedant in me really can't resist :oops:.

    This is a Hollywood variation of an urban legend! What is called "gas embolism" (i.e. a bubble of air being introduced directly into the blood stream) is almost always harmless. It often happens after surgery, and small air bubbles are quite commonly introduced by injection or intravenous drips. Usually this causes no symptoms whatsoever, and the air is just absorbed into the body over a few hours or days. Sometimes a large bubble lodges in tissues, at which point it can become uncomfortable - but it is still harmless and usually absorbed without any problem. Extremely rarely, a very large bubble can lodge in the heart blocking the blood flow. This can cause a heart attack, which could be fatal. However, even if you were to be injected with a completely empty syringe, although I wouldn't recommend it, you would be very unlucky to die. So, I am afraid, as a means of either murder or suicide the injection of air really doesn't cut it!

    Insulin is a different matter, however. A large enough dose will quite quickly put anyone - diabetic or not - into a coma, and if that isn't treated they most definitely will die. However, this really isn't dangerous knowledge. If you are looking for ways to kill yourself or anyone else, then most prescription medicines will do the job, as will a bottle of paracetamol or even weed-killer! I am sure that everyone knows this, and it is important that they do because you need to be careful when handling medicines or toxic chemicals!
  10. janabelle

    janabelle Regular

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    I've accidentally overdosed myself a few times. A couple of times when I started on Lantus, I was using a vial and syringe. The worst time I took my Humalog(purple) vial from the fridge instead of my Lantis(purple) vial. I had recently changed to Lantus, and it was the first time I had used a clear long-acting. I took over 30 units of Humalog,thinking it was Lantus, my usual dose was 4 units! I realised straight away what i had done, and got my husband to take me to casualty. They were very good and put me on a glucose drip straight away. I still had to stuff my face with chocolate and lucozade, and it was still going dangerously low. They monitored me well and let me go after bout 6 hours. It was bloody scary, and they kept querying whether it was accidental!
    I made a stupid, but not so dangerous error with my long-acting last week. I took 22 units instead of 12 units one evening last week. I was ok though, I just cut out my evening humalog and I was fine. Still bit scary though!
    Jus
  11. Fallenover

    Fallenover New Member

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    thanks SarahQ, yes im very glad i didnt manage it. as i said it was a bad chapter in my life, i was 15 and we all know at that age everything seems a lot worse then what it actually is. i realised afterwards that i did it for all the things that didnt matter, and thankfully it made my relationship with my mum a lot better, at the time i didnt feel like i could talk to her, but i now know the whole time she was really there for me. i still have problems dealing with my diabetes, im still seeing a shrink becuase they think im in denial about the diabetes. but i now have my gorgous daughter, she keeps me going when i get down. thanks for the hug!!! :D
  12. ChocFish

    ChocFish

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    Thank heavens you did not succeed, and please remember this forum, come in here when you have any down days, we all get those now and then, we are here for you and each other.

    Love and hugs

    Karen x
  13. sofaraway

    sofaraway Regular

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    I have a friend who has tried to kill themselves a couple of times with insulin OD's but thankfully not succeeded.
    I actually found ODing on oral meds alot worse because they stayed in the system alot longer than insulin. Not expereinces I'm proud of and hope not to repeat.
  14. lionrampant

    lionrampant Regular

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    CSI did this a few years back. In fact it introduced a major character called Lady Heather - a dominatrix who was diabetic. Anyway, I liked it because they did it right - it wasn't some piddly dose the killer used, it was some huge ass "oh snap a diabetic would die from that" kinda thing if I recall correctly.
  15. moondust23

    moondust23 New Member

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    can any of you tell me please how soon would you die from an insulin overdose...my cat recently died suddenly and unexpectedly no former illness....and I suspect an ex of o/d-ing him on insulin by poisoning his food is this a possibility my vet says its the only thing that could kill within an hour

    does it cause a seizure?
  16. totsy

    totsy Senior

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    hya,
    i wouldnt know how long it would take but it can cause seizures, in humans insulin isnt ingested through the stomach so im not sure the cat having it in food would do anything :?
  17. moondust23

    moondust23 New Member

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    ok thanks, no I'm not sure what would happen but my vet said it would kill in an hour
  18. Trinkwasser

    Trinkwasser Senior

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    Point of information: you can in the States, I believe it was a part of the original patent that it should be available without prescription. I think this is limited to NPH and R. However in many States you cannot buy the syringes without prescription.
  19. Mastermind

    Mastermind New Member

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    On a simular subject we KEEP seeing on TV programs like Casualty and Heartbeat that there is a hunt for a missing diabetic because "if she/he doesn't get her fix of insulin she/he will die" Surely if he/she doesn't eat during that period, there will be no need to take insulin. As I am a type2, perhaps I'm wrong. Am I??
  20. aphex2k

    aphex2k New Member

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    It's extremely rare to treat Schizophrenia with ECT. It's more for severe and enduring depressive illnesses.

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