OBJECTIVES: To investigate the use of indwelling catheters as injection aids at diabetes onset to reduce injection pain and pre-injection anxiety. STUDY DESIGN: Forty-one patients aged 8.1 +/- 3.7 years (range, 1-15) participated in this open, controlled randomized study. A 10-cm VAS with faces was used for scoring. A local anesthetic cream was used before all insertions. The control group used insulin pens with standard needles. After one week, the indwelling catheter group could choose regular injections but were included in the "intention to treat" analysis. RESULTS: Injection pain and anxiety decreased from day 1 to 15 in both groups (average, 4.1 injections/day). Pain was significantly lower for indwelling catheter injections when scored by parents (median, 1.2 cm vs 2.7 cm; P =.002), children/teenagers (0.8 cm vs 1.5 cm; P =.006), and nurses (1.4 cm vs 3.0 cm; P =.002). Parental pre-injection anxiety was also lower (1.2 cm vs 2.9 cm; P =.016). Taking injections, including inserting catheters, was found to be less problematic with an indwelling catheter (1.6 cm vs 3.3 cm;P =.009). During the 6-month follow-up, injection pain and injection problems were significantly lower in the catheter group. Mean catheter indwelling time was 3.7 days. Median pain for catheter insertion was 2.1 cm and for glucose testing was 0.9 cm. Sixteen of 20 patients continued to use indwelling catheters after 2 weeks, and 9 of 20 after 6 months. CONCLUSIONS: We found an evident relief of pre-injection anxiety and injection pain when using indwelling catheters for introducing insulin injections at the onset of diabetes.