Needles Bending


Just to remind everyone: I’m new to insulin and inject Lantus once a day into my abdomen using a Solostar,

On one of my first few days, an injection was unusually painful and when I removed the needle I found that it was bent.

Today, I was injecting in a different place, and the same thing happened, but this time, some blood came out also.

I use each of my needles only once. I check each needle before use by pressing 2 U out through it, as the instructions say to do, so it’s unlikely that the needles are (visibly) defective before use.

Does anyone know what’s happening, and what I can do about it?


Maybe you have tough skin, M! I’ve even dropped my pen, needle down, and didn’t bend the little tip. I know they wear down very quickly with use but haven’t had any problem with them bending.
Like you I get the occasional bit of blood when I inject some days and have no real understanding of why that happens then - when nothing seems different from the last time it didn’t bleed.
Lately, I’ve had no trouble at all using that ‘spare tire’ of blubber I’m ashamed to still have around my middle. But higher up on my abdomen, it’s much more sensitive - heck there might even be a teensy bit of muscle up there somewhere! I did a sit-up once!

I’ve had a couple of needles bend lately, but I realized I was pushing a bit to one side and that’s probably what bent them. Modern needles are extremely thin walled, and have a very small diameter, so there isn’t much strength in them. They definately will bend very easily.

Try to put the needle straight in, push the plunger down while holding it really steady then wait 10 seconds, then pull straight out.

If you move it in any other direction at all, it can bend. It can even break off while its in you, so we need to pay attention to what we’re doing. (this is pretty rare, but I’ve seen it happen to someone else).

If it continues, I’d switch to a slightly heavier gauge needle, which would be less likely to bend. You can talk to your pharmacist about it and he can recommend something just a little thicker. This should solve the problem.

If your skin is tough, it might account for it too, like bikette said. The slightly thicker needle would help with this too. You can always try a different brand too. Some brands are sharper and have less “dudds”. Which brand, diameter, and length are you currently using?

The blood indicates you hit a capillary ( a tiny blood vessel). Try to avoid any visible veins, as getting insulin into a vein will cause a sudden and dangerous drop in blood sugar. The tiny capillaries aren’t really a problem, just apply some pressure with an alcohol swab until it stops bleeding.

If you want to avoid getting blood on your clothing, you could keep a few bandaids handy in your kit for bleeders.

If your skin is getting dry and tough, try using a moisturizer after your shower on the area you use to inject, but be sure to clean it with alcohol before doing the injections. Combining moisturizer with injections might not be such a good idea, and could leave you more open to infections, if you don’t use a swab first. Germs love moisture.

“Which brand, diameter, and length are you currently using?”

Insupen 32G x 5/16" (0.23 x 8mm)

Today I was paying more attention, and

  1. I think that I sometime push the needle in with a somewhat jerky movement, and
  2. I decided to look carefully at some new needles, and two out of the three I checked were very slightly out of true. Since they do bend easily, even that slight deviation may make them bend more as I push them in. I asked a pharmacist at our HMO today, and he said that he’s heard that some more expensive brands are less prone to bend, but that’s the only brand they have.


bad/defective batch of pen tops?

A 32 gauge needle is really, really thin. Maybe you need a 31 or a 30 gauge. They are a tiny bit thicker, but might make the difference and not bend.


I’ve been trying something, and checking the possibilities. Trying a slightly thicker needle is certainly a possibility, but I’m afraid that it might hurt more. I’m rather needle-shy anyway. As to a shorter needle, the nurse said that I’m too fat, though I must admit that she did phrase it more politely.

I checked out the possibility of buying better needles privately, but Becton Dickinson needles cost privately 25 times (!) what I’m paying the HMO.

What I’m doing for the moment sounds strange, but it works: I check the needle carefully, and then push it into myself along its own real axis, not the axis of the pen. I hope that that continues to work; if not, I’ll try one of the other solutions. The doctor pointed out that if I get a batch with a lower percentage of lemons, I can just throw away the lemons.

Thanks again.

Hello, was just browsing the TU boards and updating profile & basically stumbled across this thread.

I've had needles bend before but I'm also a fairly long term T1 Diabetic & as most know you need to rotate your injection sites or you get a buildup of scar tissue in the area you persistantly inject.

I've also been guilty in the past of, unsure how to describe it really, using a stabbing motion to inject myself, as you and several others have already mentioned the needles are only tiny. I use 8mm needles but really want to drop down to 5mm.

If you are relativly new to Diabetes you might also tense up before injecting, even subconsiously, the best you can do is to relax (that means body & mind).

Maple sugar I had the same issue when I first started. After awhile I realized I was very slightly moving the needle. I now go straight in and out. It could be a flick of your wrist to make the needle stay straight. Just practise makes perfect.