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I Froze My Injectable Medication!

Every Sunday for almost the last two years, I have been giving myself an injectable medication for my diabetes. My drug plan pays the pharmacy about $750 (Cdn) for a 3 month supply which amounts to 12 pre-filled needles. My medication must be refrigerated. For that same two years, I have been placing it in the same place in my downstair’s fridge, the fridge we use for the extras we buy on sale like the food we will use in the next couple of days, or for pop, juice, etc. My medication is in the small drawer that is under a shelf. It is my drawer for my medication. No food is in that drawer. My injectable is in a glass casing so it’s important that it doesn’t get knocked around or dropped. I have not deviated from the spot where I keep it. I have always kept it safe…until the other day.

My diabetes medication froze in the fridge

I was down to my last box, my last 4 needles. I took out one to inspect as I always do. Something wasn’t right. I tipped it upside down looking for the bubble that is supposed to be there. It wasn’t. Maybe I wasn’t seeing this right. I tipped it again. No bubble. I took out another needle, again no bubble. My medication was frozen! I went into panic mode. How did this happen? Now, what do I do? My pharmacist! I’ll call her. As I’m on hold waiting to talk to her, the numbers are running through my head. I’m going to have to pay $245+ to get a month’s supply. You realize just how fortunate you are to drug coverage when things like this happen. This was going to be a very costly mistake, I was going to have to pay out of pocket to replace it. The pharmacist verified that I cannot use the med now that it had been frozen. She reassured me that we would figure this out. She reassured me that giving it a day late as we figured this out also wasn’t a crisis, it’s not insulin. I wasn’t so upset that I might be late giving my med, it has happened occasionally. I was very upset because it’s a month’s supply that I just lost. I was still trying to process how this could have happened. The last needle out of my last box was fine, this made no sense. The pharmacist said she’d try to send it through the drug plan to see if it would be accepted; it was rejected. I found out that with an explanation from the pharmacy to my drug plan, there was a chance they would cover the accident. We would find out Monday. What if the drug plan didn’t? She said if the drug plan wouldn’t accept the explanation, the pharmacy would cover the expense. I was now more dumbfounded than when I found the frozen med! I’d never heard of this before. Thank you!

How did my medication freeze?

So what happened in my fridge? I have a TENS unit. I bought new electrodes for it that said ‘store in fridge’ for longer life. I put that one box of needles on top of it. The extra cold from the electrode package froze my med.

Happy ending and a huge lesson learned!

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