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NovoPen hack!

Discussion in 'Type 1 Diabetes' started by harrisphil, Sep 6, 2019.

  1. harrisphil

    harrisphil · Member

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    Hi guys,


    Recently I got to work in the morning, starving, ready to make my usual oatmeal breakfast in the microwave (I get in too early to eat at home).

    And as per the normal routine, grab my NovoEcho to click 3.5 units into my belly, 15min before eating.


    To my horror I went to click, 0.5 only allowed; the insulin vial was empty!

    At least that’s what the pen thought... I could see maybe 2-3% insulin left in the vial, that the plunger couldn’t get to.

    The Echo pen must have a mechanically dialled in 300 units of clicks, because i couldn’t get it to go any further.


    Armed with hunger and being an engineer by trade I wouldn’t let myself be defeated.

    So, I took the plastic cap off the end of one of my disposable needles and placed it behind the back of the vial, and reloaded it into the pen. The plunger, with the plastic jammed in there, had more to give, and I actually managed to get another 8 units out of the vial to see me out for lunch also!


    I’m not recommending people do this every time their reusable insulin vial is “empty”. Just go to the fridge and replace it.


    But in case you are caught short like I was, facing a forced fasting day; here is another diabetic life hack- in case you hadn’t already discovered it for yourself!


    Cheers,

    Phil
     
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  2. Antje77

    Antje77 LADA · Moderator
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    Yup, there's about 20 bonus units in an empty pen :)
     
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  3. Juicyj

    Juicyj Type 1 · Moderator
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    Seems incredibly wasteful - great share, thanks Phil. I often wondered that when I was using pens, now I use a pump I try and milk it to the last drop each time to save wasting insulin and only fill each cannula set with what I need to last me 3 days.
     
  4. NinaB73

    NinaB73 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    That's so cool ;) I read your post out to my hubby! Which I've never done before with forum posts but he's also an engineer and quite pro active in my diabetes after 20 odd years together and I just knew if he was DIABETIC AND HUNGRY!! He would of tried to have worked something like you in your situation!! I think you are ingenious and imaginative and I like that and it now seems obvious!! I now know what to do in that survival situation that we all find ourselves in!! Hunger no more!!:)
     
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  5. lizdeluz

    lizdeluz Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Phil, great idea. I've often looked at that poor, lonely, abandoned centimetre of insulin .....
    Resourceful and clever of you to work out how to get at it when the rest is in the fridge at home.
     
  6. Robinredbreast

    Robinredbreast Type 1 · Oracle

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  7. Shiba Park

    Shiba Park Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    In a similar vein; Novorapid pump carts are exactly the same dimensions as the pen carts, except they're shorter. This means they can't be used in a pen. But they can!

    For emergency backup if my pump fails, I carry a Novopen, the green plastic needle collar and a tube 'extender' cut down from an empty cartridge. With these bits'n'bobs I can take the cartridge from my pump and use it in the pen, so I don't have to carry (and waste) pen cartridges.

    I don't recommend this as anything other than a last resort solution.

    Shiba.
     
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  8. Redvee

    Redvee Type 1 · Member

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    I feel some fettling of some plastic is in order tonight to be kept with my insulin pen for those days when I forget to carry a spare 3ml cartridge with me.
     
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