Welts, Knots, Bruises


I used Humalog or the equivalent Lilly brand fast acting insulin for 44 years. It was just call Regular, or R. I used their U-40 version for a while (only 40% as strong as their normal). I used Lilly brand NPH also. In 1996 Lilly released Humalog, which was faster, and I started using that one. That was a big deal.

Anyway, I used nothing but Lilly rapid insulin for 44 years until I started using a pump. After only 3 months on a pump I realized it was not really a good pump insulin and I switched to NovoLog.

The point is, I had an extremely long background of using Lilly insulin and nothing but Lilly insulin for a very long time, but when I saw problems I switched and am very glad I did.

So put aside whatever fear you have of NovoLog, or any loyalty you have with Humalog or whatever it might be, and just make the switch for a while and see what happens.

I can even send you some if you want. I have some very fine bottles in my special wine rack.

I don’t know why something is different now for you, but when you tried NovoLog, was it better than Humalog?


If I recall correctly, Allison wound up having really significant drops after showering while using NovoLog. And then switched back to Humalog because she hated that drop?


Good recall! Yes. This is why I switched back to Humalog.

Depending on what this morning’s injection site (Novolog) ends up looking like by tomorrow, I’m probably going to end up trying Novolog in the pod again and see how my cannulas end up looking with it.

When I tried Novolog last April, I was afraid of trying something new. And I was hesitant about what different ground rules Novolog might have for me to discover that were different from Humalog.

This time around, I have no issue with trying Novolog from an experimentation standpoint. But I just philosophically don’t want to be allergic to ANY insulin bc if I become allergic to Humalog after 13 years of use, that prospect is just really unpalatable.

Pumping is fantastic for me for a whole lot of reasons. My control is so much easier and consistent with pumping than MDI because of my ability to change basal rates instantaneously. My control is pretty darn good on Humalog…but I need to find a way to take more insulin at one time for meals without inducing tunneling…which lead me to injections…which lead me to pay attention to these red (non-itchy) welts that hang around. I still have discernible lumps where I injected for lunch on Wednesday and Thursday of last week. My Humalog injection from yesterday is just light pink now…but still a welt.

Sooooo…Novolog is probably getting a trial from me this week and for the next several. I want to see if there is any difference in cannula impact and survival on Novolog. If it works, awesome. But I will still never love the idea of having become allergic to my source of survival.

I somehow believe you might have an amazing insulin vial storage system. If so, I want to see it. I’ll see if I can get Novolog from my doctor tomorrow. If not, I have you on speed dial for back-up. Thank you for that option and offer. That’s huge.


In the interest of science…

I have a Humalog pen injection site, a Humalog syringe injection site, and a Novolog syringe injection site all cooking to compare them.

I might skip my shower tonight to see if that makes a difference with the welts. I would prefer not to, but Science!

Update: Novolog injection site from 12 hours ago is now red and puffy…about 25% as bad as yesterday’s Humalog welt.

Update: My Novolog syringe injection site is just as large as the Humalog injection sites (size of a quarter), but half as red. My Novolog syringe injection was 24 hours ago, and my Humalog syringe injection was 12 hours ago. Taking a hot shower at that point didn’t seem to change the size/redness/etc. The lumps/redness seem to take 12 hours to show up, another 24 to mostly go away. Insulin effectiveness doesn’t seem to be diminished.


Doctor had no idea. He thinks it is an allergy or an infection since I tend not to use alcohol wipes prior to injections. I find it unlikely that I’d have five identical experiences of quarter sized red areas in three areas that were all infected injection sites without any indication in my blood sugar.

Regardless, I did my lunch injection of Humalog after cleaning the area with an alcohol wipe today. I imagine it will turn red tonight.

Looking into some literature today, it appears I’m experiencing “erythema” at the injection sites for both Humalog and Novolog.


What needle length do you use? Have you experimented with different needle lengths?


I used 4mm nano pen needles. I used 6 mm syringes when I did syringe injections. Pen needles are 32 gauge.


Were the 6mm better or worse than the 4mm’s?

FWIW, I never use anything less than 8mm. I think they work faster than the shorter ones.


How much would 8mm put me at risk of accidentally doing an IM in my leaner areas?

The 6mm might have been less red, but they still reacted out to same diameter.


You are lean, so 8mm might hit muscle, depending on where you use it. But not always.

If you pinch up and go at an angle, you can get it right in the fat layer between skin and muscle. I think that might be a good place to try to avoid irritation.

Any of these things are easy to try. And really the only way to know is to try it. You can get a pack of 8mm pen needles without script for $10-20 on Amazon, depending on which brand you buy. So it’s a very easy thing to test.


I will order some and give it a whirl.

Pod change coming up in the next few hours. Do you vote for Novolog still?


I would definitely try NovoLog if you have not been doing that in the pod. See how it compares.




Alright…Novolog Butt Pod 2.0 #1 has been started.

I’m preparing for some magic.


@Eric, I don’t know what it’s doing (sarcasm - it’s clearly working better than Humalog has in for-freakin-ever).

I didn’t jump through hoops to get this NovoButtPod started (used a tiny .4 starter bolus and 10% extra for an hour after starting it). It’s just staring back at me like, “Yeah. I’m cooler than Humalog until my temperamentalness does something to scare you, Allison.”


Trust the Novo!