Gear Test: Fridge-To-Go Travel Wallet Rating: Not Recommended Great looking cooler too cold for MS meds
Upsides +Very compact and easy to tote +Excellent, thoughtful construction +Lighter than most coolers
Downsides -If used as directed, it freezes your MS medication -Ditto -Ditto
! IMPORTANT! ActiveMSers recommends that you do not use the Fridge-To-Go Travel Wallet to keep your multiple sclerosis medication cold. If used as directed, it will freeze. This warning does not apply to diabetic medication, which was not tested.
We had high hopes for the Fridge-To-Go Travel Wallet, which was originally designed for diabetics to carry their insulin at refrigerator-like temperatures. The 4.3” by 9.5” Travel Wallet is only 1.6” thick. Simply toss it in your freezer overnight, and presto, you have a mini cooler that is reported to keep your meds cool for up to 12 hours. Just zip in your medication, sandwiching it between two frozen, insulated panels. And therein lies the problem.
When we first tested the mini cooler, we impatiently froze it for six hours and it did okay. Temps dropped to a low of 34 degrees and didn’t hit 46 degrees for 3.5 hours. I was hoping for improved cooling, so this time I left it in the freezer for a good 12 hours (at approximately 0 degrees F). This led to serious issues in our next round of testing: temps dropped to 16.2 degrees in the Wallet in just 7 minutes and stayed below 32 degrees for nearly 1 hour (55 minutes). I tested the Wallet again and got similar results: 16.2 degrees in 10 minutes. I also filled a Copaxone syringe with water, put it in its original packaging, and tested to see if the 1 ml of fluid would freeze. It did, and in under 10 minutes.
Is the cooler worthless for MSers? We did run one more test, this time keeping it in the coldest part of the refrigerator (not freezer). The Travel Wallet managed to keep temps under 46 degrees for nearly three hours, perfect for short trips or perhaps toting your meds in a hot car. However, due to the potential for misuse, ActiveMSers cannot recommend this product in its current form for keeping multiple sclerosis medication cold.
ActiveMSers discussed its findings at length with the executives of Fridge-To-Go. The wallet was originally designed for insulin vials of 10ml, which their initial tests showed that that volume of liquid did not freeze. We did not test liquids of this capacity, as MS medications range in considerably lower volumes: from .2ml to 1ml. Additionally, Fridge-To-Go tests measured the temperature of the insulin itself at hourly periods, but our findings showed the greatest risk for freezing is in the first 15 minutes.
Fridge-To-Go is rerunning their tests to confirm its safety for insulin (their original tests have been pulled from their website) and has agreed to add a warning label to their cooler recommending minimum volumes. We are also happy to report that the company is now looking into developing one specifically for MS medication with input from ActiveMSers. We’ll keep you MSers posted and we applaud Fridge-To-Go for its prompt and professional manner in addressing this situation.
After 10 minutes, our 1ml test syringe of water was frozen.