March 1, 2013

Does Needle Size Matter?


sizeIt’s a touchy topic that ordinarily requires a delicate approach, but we’re talking about size of needles here.

In the December 2012 issue of Diabetes Technology & Therapies, the author asks, “Does Size Matter? Thoughts about Insulin Pen Needles.”

The author of this article is Dr. Irl Hirsch. He’s kind of a big deal. Not only is he professionally trained to understand and treat diabetes but he’s been living with it since the age of 6. 

Dr. Hirsch is on the medical advisory board of TCOYD, a collaborative effort to educate and empower the diabetes community since 1995. TCOYD is a fantastic site but it also offers conferences all-across North America.

The size of needles, in my diabetes lifetime, has varied. In the earlier years,  the thickness of the needle was clearly wider than it is today. When I upgraded to a smaller gauge needle — the  difference was noticeable.

Both the frequency of bruising and the momentary pain of the injection were less noticeable. Maybe in the next 30 years, the needles size will be decreased so much so it is nonexistent. There’s always room for hope.

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