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10-13-2017 | Insulin | Article

A Randomized Controlled Trial to Assess the Impact of Proper Insulin Injection Technique Training on Glycemic Control

Diabetes Therapy

Authors: Inna V. Misnikova, Valeria A. Gubkina, Tatyana S. Lakeeva, Alexander V. Dreval

Publisher: Springer Healthcare



Improper injection technique can negatively affect glycemic control and treatment tolerability. We assessed the impact of structured insulin injection training on glycemic control.


We compared changes in glycated hemoglobin (A1C) and fasting plasma glucose following structured insulin injection training in a 6-month pilot study in patients with type 1 or 2 diabetes. Patients were recruited from mobile clinics in Moscow, Russia, and randomized into three groups. Groups 1 and 2 received structured injection training, and group 3 did not. Group 1 received 4-mm needles sufficient for each injection; groups 2 and 3 provided their own needle supply. Changes in insulin total daily dose (TDD), injection technique, needle reuse, and lipohypertrophy (LH) were assessed.


Of 120 patients enrolled, 116 were included in all analyses (group 1, n = 43; group 2, n = 35; group 3, n = 38). At 6 months, mean [95% CI] reductions in A1C were significant in groups 1 and 2 (− 1.00% [10.9 mmol/mol (− 1.3 to − 0.6)] and − 1.00% [10.9 mmol/mol (− 1.4 to − 0.7)], respectively; P < 0.001 for both), but not in group 3 (− 0.02% [0.2 mmol/mol (− 1.2 to 1.6)]). Increases in insulin TDD, however, were similar and significant across groups (approximately 6 IU; P < 0.05). Injection technique improved, and needle reuse and LH declined in groups 1 and 2, but not in group 3.


Little is known about the glycemic impact of insulin injection training. We found that structured training and the use of short pen needles can improve injection technique, leading to significant A1C reductions and decreased rates of LH.

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