Insulin type will depend on goal of treatment (immediate vs. delayed effect), species, clinical preference, and response to therapy. The most commonly used insulins in veterinary medicine are listed below.
Insulin is measured and dosed in “units” instead of milliliters. There are 2 types of insulin syringes on the market. It is essential to know the difference, as the “unit” on each type of syringe is different. The concentration of the insulin corresponds with the type of syringe to use – the concentration is always listed on the bottle.
U-100 syringes – most common. 100 units = 1 mL; 1 unit = 0.01 mL
- Available in 0.3ml (30 units), 0.5ml (50 units) and 1ml (100 units) syringes
U-40 syringes – less common. 40 units = 1 mL; 1 unit = 0.025 mL
- Available in 0.3ml (12 units), 0.5ml (20 units) and 1ml (40 units) syringes
Using a U-40 syringe with a U-100 insulin will result in a 2.5X overdose! Always double check!