Prescription drama

So I have been trying to get my prescription for insulin filled since Saturday. The pharmacy says they are waiting on the doctor to call and the doctor said they never received the request but would send in a prescription. Now my doctors office is closed and the pharmacy says that there is nothing they can do without a prescription. I’m basically out of insulin and have no idea what I can do.

Are you on MDI or a pump?

If a pump you you should be able to buy a vial of regular (R) insulin to limp along with until you get things straightened out. It would be annoying as hell to work with and require a lot of extra vigilance on your part due to the difference in the activity curve, but it's better than nothing.

Or your go to a hospital emergency room, explain what happened, get a script from them & then die from shock later when you the bill. Without knowing anything other than that you use some form of insulin I'm not really sure what to suggest.


I agree with what John said though I don't think you can use Regular in a pump, you'd probably need to go to shots. I think the ER is also a good idea. . I tend to have issues with the clinic I go to in my small town so I always request things long before I need them and when they don't get things done in what I think is a reasonable time frame I have been known to go there and tell the women at the front desk that I'm not leaving until something is done. I do so in my nice tone, as in "Oh, that's ok, I'll just wait." Then I stand there looking right at them.

That must be anxiety producing. I hope you get at least a temporary amount ASAP.

I don't think you can use Regular in a pump

No, you can definitely use R in a pump. It's just that no one prefers to these days since there are better choices with less confusing adsorption rate profiles. Wikipedia tells me that Humalog was first approved for use in the United States in 1996. What else would they use in pumps before the fast acting insulins were available?

I can't recall for sure but I think I was still using R when I switched to the pump and I filled my first few reservoirs with it. Then my doctor at the time gave me a script for the "new" fast acting insulin.

But then I took a rather ad hoc approach to starting with a pump. Basically, it arrived at my house, I read the book that came with it, and then I hooked myself up. A week or two later I went to an appointment with my diabetes "educator" and was surprised that she was surprised that I was already wearing the pump.

No one had ever bothered to make it clear to me that they wanted me to wait. And it just didn't seem like that big a deal to me. Besides, it was a new tech toy. It was fun. I like tech.

But I digress ...


Thanks all! I managed to get it all straightened out this morning, I just had to be late to work and even calling right when the Endo's office opened I had issues. My endo is like an hour away so I was standing in the pharmacy while on the phone with the office. It has been so stressful going back and forth between the office and the pharmacy with both sides saying that they haven't heard anything from the other. I think in the future, I am going to refill my script earlier than when I am about to use my last dose. My endo over prescribed for each month so the last script with 3 refills lasted 6 months as opposed to 3. I figure if I refill the last refill exactly 1 month after the previous, I will have plenty of time to work out the prescription renewal. Also, I have been overly stressed lately due to a death in the family so I have been going through my insulin way faster this last few months than previously.

Thanks for the correction, John. I personally wouldn't have a clue being a relative newbie, born to D in the age of the "new insulins" I wonder if one day there will be few people using MDI and people will consider it the "old days". Well, at least in the developed countries where we can afford such "can't-live-without-them" gadgets.

Glad the crisis was solved, Alyssa. Yep, I don't trust the "powers that be" to wait for last minute.

Yes, that "Oh, crap! I'm out! Now what?" panic does leave an impression. Or if it doesn't the amount of trouble you have to go through to fix it certainly does.

My "supplies moment" came when I somehow ran out of syringes. I guess I mistakenly thought I still had a refill left on my script.

I actually tried talking to my doctor at the time via his answering service. It was a learning experience. It turns out my doctor really had no idea who the hell I was without having my records pulled from his files.

Since he was home for the weekend, this was not possible. He informed me that under no circumstances would he write a prescription for "some stranger" contacting him via the phone. I could be ... probably was ... some user of illegal drugs trying to scam him.

At that time I did the ER visit thing. I showed up. I answered a few questions about my insulin use to satisfy them I might actually use it, and I got a script.

The irony to me is that I got myself into the same position a few years later. But then I was out of town in Minnesota on business. All I had to do was drive to a local Target that had a pharmacy and buy a box of syringes. No prescription was required in MN. (I don't know if that's still the case.)


I wonder if one day there will be few people using MDI and people will consider it the "old days".

I tend to doubt it. I think a "cure" is more likely to come first than that the price of pumps & their paraphernalia will drop enough to displace MDI via either syringes or insulin pens.

I remember about 7 years ago in a different context Joel (jjm335) shared some of his experience getting a pump in the UK from the NHS. At that time he had to work really hard over a long period of time to get them to make an exception and prescribe a pump for him. He said that what was most common in Europe at that time was to have people use MDI with insulin pens.

I'm not sure how much if any of that has changed since then. I'm not sure if it has gotten any easier to get an insulin pump even in the so-called developed world.


Happens to me almost every time I buy insulin. I feel your pain. My pharmacy has about ten different accounts set up under my name in their computer system, so its just a matter of me going in enough times that somebody randomly selects the account with the current RX. Tricky. Ijohn, in mn, if nothing else, I think you can say your a drug addict, bring in some used syringes, and they have to trade them for clean ones. I have never tried that, but I think that's the law.

if nothing else, I think you can say your a drug addict, bring in some used syringes, and they have to trade them for clean ones.

That strikes me as more than a bit of an absurd way to approach it.

At the time, all I had to do (in MN & WI) was ask the pharmacist for a box of 30 unit U-100 syringes. I got asked a few questions about my diabetes. I answered. We completed the purchase.

In NY state this is illegal. Or at least was. I have no idea what the current laws are any longer since I haven't needed to buy syringes for nearly two decades.