Why 100-Years After the Discovery of Insulin and the Appearance of Insulin-Induced Lipodystrophy: Are We Still Struggling with this Nasty Complication?

*Corresponding author: Sandro Gentile*, Giuseppina Guarino, Ersilia Satta, Carmine Romano and Felice Strollo


Since a century ago, insulin extracted from the animal pancreas has been used for therapeutic purposes. Lipoatrophy (LA) lesions came up first due to the impurities of preparations. However, as technology has progressed, we have had more purified insulin preparations available, now reduced to less than 5%. The 95% of local complications was represented by lipohypertrophy (LH), due to the recourse to narrow areas of skin, reuse of the same needle, injection of cold insulin. The average frequency of LH in the world is 47%, with peaks of 75%, reflecting the inappropriate educational activity of the diabetic teams. In this brief review, the causes of this failure are described, and feasible rehabilitative solutions are proposed.

Diabetes; Insulin; Injection technique; Lipoatrophy; Lipohypertrophy; Education; Rehabilitation.