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janniev

Alternative to Lantus

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Hi!

 

I've been diagnosed as a T1 since Sept 07. The dr prescribed me Lantus (12u per day) as basal insulin and Apidra (4u per meal = 12u per day) as bolus insulin. My BGs have worked fine with my vasting count rarely (once a month maybe) above 5.5 and post meal checks below 8. My HbA1c at diagnosis in Sept was 12,4 and the most recent one (31 Dec) was 6.1. So everyhting seems to be under control.

 

My medical insurance don't cover the Lantus (Even though they do cover the Apidra). I'm concerned that when the honeymoon is over that I'll need more Lantus, since it's quite expensive to purchase.

 

What other basal insulin might do the same trick as Lantus?

 

Thanks for all the great info!

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What other basal insulin might do the same trick as Lantus?

 

Thanks for all the great info!

 

Levemir I think from Novo Nordisk. I am thinking of getting Levemir too as the Lantus is a good insulin but the Pens that they use is terrible. The Autopen24 is not to my liking plus it uses 2U per click and that's just rubbish.

 

Novo for me. :D

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There's as said, Levemir from Novo Nordisk... I'm on Levemir for basal and Novorapid with meals, it works great. I've used Lantus aswell, just after diagnosed, but changed over to Levemir later because the Lantus pens are c.r.a.p. I prefer Novopens :) Levemir doesn't sting like Lantus when injecting, so i also feel it's more "comfortable" to use.

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There's as said, Levemir from Novo Nordisk...

Hey North, Is Levemir clear like Lantus? I am going to change too as I am fed up with the stupid pen that they use. :(

And see if I can get the novopen 4. :D I bet that the Novopen 4 would be a joy to use. :D :D

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Are you using lantus vials or cartridges? Just checking because my insuance covers the regular vials just fine, but will not cover cartidges for pens. Silly silly regulation... but it doesn't bother me because it covers my novolog penfills in any case.

 

although I've never tried it, i've heard that levimer works as others have said... or you could try a pump.

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although I've never tried it, i've heard that levimer works as others have said... or you could try a pump.

 

Hello Erin, As far as I know that levemir cannot be used in a pump from the Perscribing Notes that I have read.

I also think that Lantus cannot be used ither.

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I think the generic brand is NHP, right?

 

You could go on a pump in which you would use the Apidra as your basal insulin.

 

Whatever you choose, good luck!

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I think the generic brand is NHP, right?

 

You could go on a pump in which you would use the Apidra as your basal insulin.

 

Whatever you choose, good luck!

Nope- NPH is a different insulin all together. None of the insulins have generics.

 

As others have said, Levemir or a pump are your best options out there if Lantus isn't covered, though I personally think it's a shame that it isn't. I had much worse control on Levemir than on Lantus.

 

I'm surprised Lantus isn't covered.

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Hey North, Is Levemir clear like Lantus? I am going to change too as I am fed up with the stupid pen that they use. :(

And see if I can get the novopen 4. :D I bet that the Novopen 4 would be a joy to use. :D :D

 

Yes it is clear. The Novopen 4 is really a great delivery device.

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It is a little stupid that it's not covered but I'll see. I'm willing to pay the few extra bucks and I know everything is under control since Lantus works quite good for me.

 

Does anybody know something about Humulog or Humulin? Will that be a suitable alternative?

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It is a little stupid that it's not covered but I'll see. I'm willing to pay the few extra bucks and I know everything is under control since Lantus works quite good for me.

 

Does anybody know something about Humulog or Humulin? Will that be a suitable alternative?

 

 

It is a fast acting insulin, a little slower and longer acting than your Apidra but not by much. An alternative is Novolog or Novorapid.

 

Some people here in a similar insurance situation as you still inject regular and NPH insulins. They are tough to manage though. The regular is too slow for a fast acting and the NPH is too fast and spikey for a basal.

 

What country are you in?

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I am thinking of getting Levemir too as the Lantus is a good insulin but the Pens that they use is terrible. The Autopen24 is not to my liking plus it uses 2U per click and that's just rubbish.

 

Novo for me. :D

 

Lantus is available in SoloStar disposable pens. This does 1U per click. It doesn't have the Mercedes-like feel of the Novopen, but it seems to do the job very adequately. I get my insulin free on the NHS, but I understand the cost of the pens and cartridges are the same, so there shouldn't be a problem with insurance. I now use the SoloStars for both Lantus and Apidra and have had no problems with them. I used to use the Autopen 24 1-20 version, which does do 1U per click, but I prefer the SoloStar.

 

I tried Levemir, it didn't work at all well for me. The action curve is very dose-dependent. I found that it only lasted about 10-11 hours, so my BG's would start to rise alarmingly in the last hour before my shot and for the following hour.

 

With Lantus I get more even coverage by taking it twice a day, at 10.00 pm and 8.00 am. Whether Lantus or Levemir works best seems to be very much dependent on the individual.

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The Lantus SoloStar disposable pens are slightly cheaper than the cartridges if thats any use to you. The price difference is around 10 dollars per box of five pens.

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Rich:

 

How are you getting on with the Apidra? Hope you got your supply of SoloStars.

 

The more I use it the more I like it - you couldn't pay me to go back to Novorapid. Apidra is just sooo predictable - makes corrections a cinch.

 

Joel

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hi ant hill novorapid here yes levemir is clear and work with the novolin pen 4, great new pen by the way although takes a little getting used to as when you inject it's so quick that you think something is wrong but it's not, i take levemir 2x a day 25units and novorapid 3x a day levemir comes in the penfills just right for the new novolin 4 pen.

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It is a little stupid that it's not covered but I'll see. I'm willing to pay the few extra bucks and I know everything is under control since Lantus works quite good for me.

 

Does anybody know something about Humulog or Humulin? Will that be a suitable alternative?

Humalog is the quick acting mealtime stuff. Then you get Humulin R, which is Regular insulin (acts over 8 hours). Humulin N is NPH, a basal insulin that acts over 18-24 hours but with a big peak in the middle of it. It is probably covered as NPH is cheap. But switching to it from Lantus would be a backward step. Managing blood sugar levels around the peak is not easy.

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hi ant hill novorapid here yes levemir is clear and work with the novolin pen 4, great new pen by the way although takes a little getting used to as when you inject it's so quick that you think something is wrong but it's not, i take levemir 2x a day 25units and novorapid 3x a day levemir comes in the penfills just right for the new novolin 4 pen.

 

That's sounds cool Novorapid!!, Now I cannot wait to see my endo, So I am counting the days LOL... :D :T

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It is a fast acting insulin, a little slower and longer acting than your Apidra but not by much. An alternative is Novolog or Novorapid.

 

Some people here in a similar insurance situation as you still inject regular and NPH insulins. They are tough to manage though. The regular is too slow for a fast acting and the NPH is too fast and spikey for a basal.

 

What country are you in?

 

I live in South Africa. I'm not sure whether I'm going to try the Novolog (IS this the Basal and the Novorapid the bolus?). Since I'm still honeymooning, the Lantus and Apidra combination have worked quite well.

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if any of you are thinking about changing to levemir, then i suggest you make sure that your health insurance will cover as it is very expensive, i have just changed from novolin nph, which cost $41 canadian for 5 penfills, to levemir 5 penfills, $136 canadian, thank the lord my health insurance covers 70%, how come levemir is so expensive ??. anyhow just a warning to all to check what is covered by your insurances.

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if any of you are thinking about changing to levemir, then i suggest you make sure that your health insurance will cover as it is very expensive, i have just changed from novolin nph, which cost $41 canadian for 5 penfills, to levemir 5 penfills, $136 canadian, thank the lord my health insurance covers 70%, how come levemir is so expensive ??. anyhow just a warning to all to check what is covered by your insurances.

I also take Levemir - which is $141 Canadian. My pharmacist says that it won't be long before Pharmacare covers it as they have now approved Lantus.

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I live in South Africa. I'm not sure whether I'm going to try the Novolog (IS this the Basal and the Novorapid the bolus?). Since I'm still honeymooning, the Lantus and Apidra combination have worked quite well.

 

Novolog and Novorapid are the same insulin. It is an analog bolus insulin and is marketed under different names in different countries.

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Hey North, Is Levemir clear like Lantus? I am going to change too as I am fed up with the stupid pen that they use. :(

 

Hi, there... noticed that you are here in Melbourne and switching to Levemir.... Do you know whether Levemir is available in pen cartriges here in Australia (PBS)?

 

I heard something about it only been available in Flexpens, the disposable Novo Nordisk pens....

 

Cheers,

 

Henry.-

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I guess I haven't really pushed for it, but neither of the insurance carriers I've been with have shown much willingness to cover pen/cartridge systems unless you're either a) young, or B) blind as a bat.

 

I'm curious about a couple of things I've read in this thread so far, one being the term "honeymooning." Is that in reference to someone who's just been diagnosed, or someone who is recently insulin initiated? Pardon my ignorance while I learn the lingo. :) I'm also wanting to know more about this Apidra that a couple of you mentioned. I'm still in the midst of getting my insulin dosing correct, and someone said the word dependable in reference to Apidra. I don't really know yet which part of my insulin regimen is causing the trouble, but I'm beginning to wonder if the Novolog is having a varied action from dose to dose. We've backed up my basal dose to try and correct the lows I've been having, but I'm still having them from time to time, and several of them have been very late in the Lantus "curve," leaving only the Novolog or my own battered pancreas as possible culprits (at least in my estimation). I just sent off a week's worth of numbers to my endo, so I'll probably have an adjustment in the next day or two when he gets back to me, but I'd like to hear some of your thoughts, too.

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I'm also wanting to know more about this Apidra that a couple of you mentioned. .

 

Apidra is a rapid acting analog insulin made by Sonofi-Aventis. I used to use Novorapid (aka Novolog in some countries) but switched to Apidra. My experience was that the action curve of Apidra was signficantly faster than Novorapid. I found that it cut in a bit quicker (reducing post-meal spikes). More importantly, Apidra seems to pre very predicatable. It does its work and gets out of my system a lot faster than Novorapid. I can pretty much discount the bolus after 3.5 h whereas Novorapid was still working at 4.5h - result far fewer hypos. About the only downside is that with big meals , the short duration of action means that digestion of the food can outlast the Apidra. For dinner, I now routinely split my shots taking about 2/3 immediately before I eat and the rest about 1 h later.

 

Of course everyone is different. I am a veteran T1 so I am not making any insulin at all myself.

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Hi, there... noticed that you are here in Melbourne and switching to Levemir.... Do you know whether Levemir is available in pen cartriges here in Australia (PBS)?

Yes they are and on the PBS

 

I heard something about it only been available in Flexpens, the disposable Novo Nordisk pens....

 

Cheers,

 

Henry.-

You can get the cartridges as I have tryed it today in fact and it's good as the Lantus @ 0.4*Kg so I can have a low dose. So I am happy, You bet I am. :D :D :T

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