Lantus – what is it, what is it for and side effects!

Lantus (  insulin glargine) is a human form of a hormone that is produced in the body, and insulin is a hormone that works by lowering blood glucose (sugar) levels. lantus is a long-acting insulin that starts working several hours after injection and continues to work evenly for 24 hours.

What is insulin lantus used for?

Lantus is used to improve blood sugar control in adults and children with diabetes mellitus. In addition, this medicine is also used to treat type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes in adults and in children with type 1 diabetes who are at least 6 years old. Some brands of lantus are for adult use only. Carefully follow all instructions for the brand of medication you are using.

Important information about lantus:

You should not use the drug if you are having an episode of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar ), or if you are in a state of diabetic ketoacidosis.

Never share a lantus injection pen or cartridge with another person, sharing injection pens or cartridges can allow diseases such as hepatitis or HIV to pass from one person to another.

The drug is just part of a complete treatment program that may also include diet , exercise, weight management, foot care, ophthalmology, dental care, and blood sugar testing . So follow your diet , medication, and exercise routines very closely. Changing any of these factors can affect your blood sugar levels .

What types of lantus insulin?

Insulin comes in many types. Each type differs in three ways:

  • Onset: How quickly it starts working to lower your blood sugar
  • Peak: when the effects on blood sugar are strongest
  • Duration: How long does blood sugar lower

1. Fast-acting insulin:

This type starts working just 15 minutes after ingestion. The peak is 30 to 90 minutes and its effects last for three to five hours.

2. Short-acting insulin:

This type takes about 30 to 60 minutes to become active in the bloodstream. The peak is two to four hours and its effects can last five to eight hours. It is sometimes called regular-acting insulin.

3. Intermediate-acting insulin:

The intermediate type takes one to three hours to start working. Also, it peaks at eight hours and runs for 12 to 16 hours.

4. Long-acting insulin:

This type takes longer to start working. Insulin can take up to 4 hours to enter the bloodstream.

5. Pre-mixed:

It is a combination of two different types of insulin: one that controls blood sugar at meals and one that controls blood sugar between meals.

Precautions before taking lantus:

You should not use lantus if you are allergic to insulin, or if you are having an episode of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar ).

The drug is not approved for use by anyone under 6 years of age, and it should not be used to treat type 2 diabetes in children of any age. To make sure the drug is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

  • Liver or kidney disease;
  • Low levels of potassium in the blood (hypokalemia);
  • Diabetic ketoacidosis (call your doctor for treatment).

Tell your doctor if you also take pioglitazone or rosiglitazone (sometimes contained in combinations with glimepiride or metformin). Taking certain oral diabetes medications while using insulin can increase your risk of serious heart problems.

Follow your doctor’s instructions on using the medication if you are pregnant or breastfeeding a baby. Also, blood sugar control is very important during pregnancy, and your dose needs may be different during each trimester of pregnancy. Your dose needs may also be different while you are breast-feeding.

How long can lantus insulin keep out of the fridge?

Keep this medicine in its original packaging, protected from heat and light. Do not insert insulin from a vial into a syringe until you are ready to give an injection. Also, do not freeze insulin or store it near the cooling element in a refrigerator. Throw away any insulin that has been frozen.

  • Storing lantus closed (not in use);
  • Place in the fridge and use until the expiration date. or
  • Store at room temperature and use within 28 days.
  • Open storage (in use) ;
  • Store the bottle in the refrigerator or at room temperature and use within 28 days.
  • Store the injection pen at room temperature (do not refrigerate) and use within 28 days.
  • Also, do not store an injection pen with the needle attached.
  • Do not use the medicine if it is cloudy, has changed color or has particles. Call your pharmacist for a new drug.

What happens if I miss a dose of lantus?

Call your doctor for instructions if you miss a dose of medicine. You should not use more than one dose in a 24 hour period. Unless your doctor tells you to. Keep insulin close at hand. So get your prescription refilled before you run out of medication completely.

What happens if I overdose on lantus?

Seek emergency medical attention. Insulin overdose can cause life-threatening hypoglycemia. In addition, symptoms include drowsiness, mental confusion, blurred vision, numbness or tingling in the mouth, difficulty speaking, muscle weakness , clumsy or jerky movements, seizures (convulsions), or loss of consciousness.

What to avoid when using lantus?

Do not change the brand of lantus or syringe you are using without talking to your doctor or pharmacist first. Also, avoid medication errors by always checking the drug label before injecting insulin and drinking alcohol . It can cause low blood sugar and interfere with diabetes treatment .

Lantus side effects:

Useful links: 

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction to lantus : redness or swelling at the injection site, itchy skin over your body, difficulty breathing, fast heartbeat, feeling faint, or swelling on your tongue. or throat. In addition, common side effects of  can include:

  • Low blood sugar ;
  • Itching, mild rash ; or thickening or emptying of the skin where you injected the medicine.

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