Diabetes Knowledge

The correct injection technique

The insulin is injected into the subcutaneous fatty tissue



  Subcutaneous fatty tissue


To achieve a good insulin dose effect it is essential to inject the insulin into the subcutaneous fatty tissue (subcutaneous injection) and not into the muscle. Injecting insulin into the muscle can lead to severe hypoglycaemia.

  Inject insulin into the subcutaneous fatty tissue
  Do not inject insulin into muscle

Broad selection of pen needle lengths – Supports your individual needs¹

  • A pronounced trend towards shorter and finer pen needles is apparent.
  • Injections with ultra short pen needles provide reliable insulin delivery into the subcutaneous fatty tissue (subcutaneous injection) and simplify injection technique.
  • The skin (epidermis and dermis) is rarely thicker than 3 mm, regardless of BMI (Body Mass Index).
  • The correct pen needle length is crucial and is determined by your healthcare professional at the start of pen therapy.
  • As a rule, therapy is usually started with the shorter pen needles.
  • Correct injection technique together with the correct pen needle length can avoid injecting into the muscle.

The correct injection technique for different needle lengths

For 4 mm needle length
Hold the pen needle at a 90 degrees angle to your skin so it is straight, without creating a skin fold (for some children, very slim adults and when injecting into the thigh, forming of a skin fold may prove necessary).

For 6 mm and 8 mm pen needle length
Injection at an angle of 90 degrees with a skin fold or 45 degrees without a skin fold.


Correct forming of a skin fold

  • Form the skin fold using thumb and index finger (possibly also using middle finger).
  • Keep skin fold loose and relaxed. Do not press together hard, resulting in pain or turning the skin white.
  • If all fingers are used, there is a risk of also including the muscle. This can lead to an unwanted intramuscular injection.

1 The information provided in this brochure are recommendations and may under no circumstances replace professional advice and/or treatment by a trained healthcare professional.