By ptsparkle Latest Reply 2011-04-08 01:02:53 -0500
Started 2009-12-30 16:12:39 -0600

Anyone ever given thought of what to do in an emergency? Here in Az, we don't have hurricanes, earthquakes,or devastating tornados. However, we do have I-10, major R.R. running through town, an AF. base, and Raytheon missle systems. All possible trucking, and rail strikes, and acts of terror. Now that I've got all nervous, that is NOT my intention.
I was wondering if there is such a product as a powdered insulin, that could be mixed with water, or some other solution, that you could have for an emergency. Pills are not a major problem as you can usually get a 90 day supply
I know they had a nasal insulin that didn't work so well. Any thoughts? I have a grab n go bag with 3-5 day supply for survival. But insulin is a concern. I know you can keep it unrefrigerated for up to 24hrs, but summer in the desert here is brutal.
Thanks, again, I'm not trying to scare anyone, but was just wondering about the insulin

19 replies

Anonymous 2011-04-08 01:02:53 -0500 Report

I asked this exact question (Did a powdered form of insulin for long-term disaster preparedness storage exist?) of a medical researcher out of concern for my daughter with Type1. He responded that it already did exist and that it existed before Pfizer's inhalable Exubera (since taken off the market). I have searched and searched for it, but have been unable to figure out who makes it and if, in fact, it exists. I know that Novo-Norkdisk has been working on insullin pills, but I don't know the status of this.
Since, if a stable, powdered form did exist, people who would need it most likely will be prevented from acquiring it by the FDA (keeping us all "safe"), therefore, I would also like to know how to make emergency insulin from porcine and bovine sources.

salmanda 2010-01-06 17:33:45 -0600 Report

I used to have a medication that came in a powder form yet it was an injectable. It also came with a vial of sterile solution. I had to draw some of the solution out and then put that in with the powder, swirl it around, and then draw that up to inject. There was a specific amount of sterile solution to inject so everyone used the same amount there. Of course the powder was premeasured by the company so that was controlled as well. I believe it still had to be refrigerated though even though it was a powder.
I have a small cloth insulated cooler that I travel with. I have two medications that need injecting and refrigeration so that is handy. I have a large prescription pill bottle that I put the sharps in, and when I return home I put them in my regular container. On one cruise line, I was offered a mini sharps container, and they took care of it when the cruise was over. That was nice!
I do hope someone comes up with a drinkable form, but I have a feeling it would taste terrible! lol
Sal :)

Edie 2010-01-05 20:53:56 -0600 Report

I have a kit I use when traveling it has an ice pack that goes with it to keep my insulin cool incase of high temps. I keep extra packs in my cooler and that way if the small one warms up I replace it with one of the bigger ones or just set my kit in the cooler and bring it out as needed.

Sue Turner
Sue Turner 2010-01-05 15:14:57 -0600 Report

It's scary no matter how you look at it!!! I worry my husband to death with all the what ifs… Poor guy!

BuddyK 2010-01-05 15:56:31 -0600 Report

Evaporative Cooling is an option that Frio has made easy.
I have used these for several years, but never at 120 in the shade. I have been diabetic, Type 1 for 57 years, and the panic has subsided about availability. If ANYTHING goes wrong in/with the country and medications are not being produced, the result is obvious. The half full view of this is if they weren't produced in the first place I wouldn't be here to be anxious about when they aren't available. I am not a Hallmark quoter, but every day is a gift, even if you don't use medications.

Sam Stokes
Sam Stokes 2010-01-05 15:00:05 -0600 Report

Interesting discussion , on keeping the insulin cool igloo makes a cooler that plugs into a car cigerate lighter prob, be the best way , all other ways just temporary.

Sue Turner
Sue Turner 2010-01-05 14:51:16 -0600 Report

I'm sorry Jim, I missed the powdered insulin part. I have never heard of anything like that. However, that would be a good thing to have in an emergency situation. I know the Glucagon comes in a powdered form. And, I personally, think that one should be liquid, because you want to get that into your system really fast, and you have to take the time to mix it before you administer it. Just doean't makes sense to me. You would think that they would/could come up with an insulin solution like that. I will keep my eyes, and ears open, and if I happen upon any information to that affect, I will certainly let you know. Sorry, I misunderstood!!!! My bs level must be all out of whack! lol That's what I am going to start blamming all my screw ups on. hehe.

ptsparkle 2010-01-05 15:56:08 -0600 Report

No need to apologize, just one of my whacky ideas. Just trying to make someone a millionaire! LOL

Sue Turner
Sue Turner 2010-01-05 13:51:12 -0600 Report

Boy Jim, that's a good one. I was told to keep my insulin refrigerated. I do know that changes in temps can affect the insulin. However, when I was taking the injections, and using the pens, after I opened one, it didn't have to be refrigerated again, and the insulin was good for like 30 days. So, if you get any answers to these concerns, please let us know, because my husband and I travel a lot on business, and that always worries me about how am I going to keep my insulin cool. We always try to find a motel that has a refrigerator in the room, but when you are out in the middle of nowhere, sometimes, you just don't have that option…Just got back from Dallas, and it was sooooooo cold, I didn't have that problem…LOL. I could just leave it in the trunk of the car, and it was fine. I was almost afraid that it would freeze, that wouldn't be good either…

ptsparkle 2010-01-05 14:02:20 -0600 Report

Thanks sue,
My main question was there such a thing as a powdered insulin. Not so much a heat or cold issue. If you are down to a few days supply and haven't picked up your refill yet, and then disaster strikes, you could have your supply of powdered insulin ready to go without worrying about cold or heat. Just mix up what you need per dose. Hope that better explains it. O.K. all you inventors…get busy.

dietcherry 2010-01-05 14:07:15 -0600 Report

My 2 cents is that there would be no quallity control if we mixed our own insulin. Sorry! Maybe a more viable option is to create insulin that resists temperature extremes. Please don't bring out the rotten tomatos! Renee

Sue Turner
Sue Turner 2010-01-05 14:56:49 -0600 Report

That's a good one too,Renee. An insulin that resists temperature extremes!!! Think we should suggest something like that to the ADA? I would be interested to know what their reaction would be…

paulbudman 2010-01-05 14:53:15 -0600 Report

I would image that the powder and the required sterile solution would have the same storage and usage conditions as the premixed insulin, so nothing would be gained!?

Sue Turner
Sue Turner 2010-01-05 15:07:17 -0600 Report

Jim that is a very viable concern. I worry about that too. I think what if my husband and I are out in the middle of nowhere, and I am running low on my insulin, have no more, and there is no place to get it, what would I do? That is a very scary thought. Because being a type 1, that is your life line! You never know when something unexpected is going to happen. I worry about that every time my husband says, we are going to such and such on business. I go into one of my panic modes…LOL

salmanda 2009-12-31 08:43:11 -0600 Report

Hi Jim,
Very good questions for us all. I am surprised that the lessons learned from Hurricane Katrina have not brought about some ideas for just this situation. Living in the northeast, I would have the cold to worry about. Keep me posted if you find out anything.
Sal :)

Anonymous 2009-12-30 20:06:44 -0600 Report

Think evaporative cooling…my hubby and I have used this approach when doing extreme primitive camping (Lake Mead - summertime - 120 in the shade). Not ideal but it could mean the difference between survival or death.

Elrond 2009-12-30 18:06:19 -0600 Report

I know what Jim is talking about. Most people have no real concept of Arizona summers. One hundred twenty degrees in the shade is not uncommon and shade is very difficult to find. A cactus doesn't cast a lot of shade. I live in Phoenix but I often wonder what I'd do if I found myself out in the Sonoran desert for any length of time. Jim, if you find an answer, let me know.

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