With the Apidra pen shortage, I've been wondering whether 28 days is really the limit once a pen's been taken out of the fridge. Since I don't use a lot of insulin in 28 days, it seems like such a waste. Well, I decided to push it and found the limit is probably pretty accurate. Today was day 31 and my 300 BG two hours after dinner tells the tale.
I use Apidra vials, not pens. I use vials for 6-7 weeks with no loss of potency. I could possibly use them for 8 weeks, but haven't pushed it that far yet. Even though it's not required, I keep mine refrigerated or in a Frio wallet to maintain a pretty constant temp. Another member said she uses her Apidra for that long without refrigeration. Wouldn't be surprised if the ok at room temp thing is so we'll buy more insulin.
I use Levemir vials for 7-8 weeks with no potency problem. Lantus really is kaput at 28 days.
Not terribly convenient to refrigerate & why I use a Frio wallet. I hate tossing half a vial out. I don't take large doses either. Understand how you feel with 300 BG.
I just got my first round of Levemir pens this week and I was surprised to see that the package insert says that it lives outside of the fridge OK (within the proper temperature range, I think 42 F to 82 F, approx.) for up to 42 days after opening. Another big advantage over Lantus if true. I of course plow through an entire pen in less than six days, because I'm not a sipper, I'm a gulper. Heh.
Don't know if pens fare differently than vials, but I use Levemir vials 7-8 weeks. A big benefit over Lantus & no sting. I used to circle Lantus day 28 on my calendar to throw it out.
I think to to really push the limit, you have to have optimal conditions as Gerri suggests. That involves keep the pen in the fridge or cool and out of light. And don't be dropping the pen on the floor all the time like I do.
The anecdotal stories I seem to see suggest that Humalog is the most heat sensitive of the rapid analog insulins.
I've used apidra vials since it came on the market. I've never seen it degrade after 30 days. I've left it at ambient temps 40-90 F for up to 45 days, maybe 60 and no ill effects.
I used to use Apidra pens (I use vials now in my pump) but I've always found it to be extremely sensitive to time out of the fridge, and also to heat compared to other insulins I've used. So, it doesn't surprise me that it has started to be less effective for you after the 28 days.
I have never counted how many days I used any of my insulin. I just use it till its gone and I have never had any issues.