Humulin R (insulin [human recombinant]) and Humalog (insulin lispro injection) are forms of insulin indicated as adjuncts to diet and exercise to improve glycemic control in adults and children with type 1 and type 2 diabetes mellitus. Humulin R is a form of short-acting insulin and Humalog is a rapid-acting human insulin analog. Humulin R is a brand-name medication that’s available both over the counter and by prescription drugs. It’s used to help manage blood sugar levels in adults and children with either type 1 or type 2 diabetes.
How Do You Use This Medication?
HUMULIN R This comes as a liquid solution. It’s given as an injection under your skin (called a subcutaneous injection). You’ll give the injections to yourself once your doctor has shown you how to administer the medication. Humulin R is available in two strengths:
· Humulin R U-100. This strength contains 100 units of insulin per 1 milliliter (mL) of solution. It comes in 3-mL and 10-mL vials.
· Humulin R U-500. This strength contains 500 units of insulin per 1 mL of solution. It comes in a 20-mL vial. It’s also available as a 3-mL KwikPen which is a prefilled pen that’s meant to be used by only one person.
HUMALOG Humalog is a liquid solution that’s given as a subcutaneous injection. This is an injection given directly under the skin. Humalog can also be given as an intravenous injection by a healthcare provider. This is an injection into a vein. Humalog comes in several forms:
· Vial for use with insulin syringes or insulin pumps. Vials come in 3-mL and 10-mL sizes. Both have the same strength: 100 units of insulin per mL (U-100). An insulin pump is a device that delivers a continuous dose of insulin, and it can also give extra doses at mealtimes.
· Disposable, prefilled injection pen called Humalog KwikPen. This 3-mL pen is available in two strengths: U-100 and 200 units of insulin per mL (U-200).
· Disposable, prefilled injection pen called Humalog Junior KwikPen. This 3-mL pen is available in one strength: U-100.
· Cartridge for use in reusable insulin pens. This 3-mL cartridge is available in one strength: U-100.
HUMALOG MIX FORMS
Humalog Mix is given as a subcutaneous injection. Humalog Mix comes as a 50/50 mixture, containing 50% insulin lispro protamine and 50% insulin lispro. It also comes as a 75/25 mixture, containing 75% insulin lispro protamine and 25% insulin lispro. Both are suspensions (a type of mixture in liquid) that come in these forms:
· Vial for use with insulin syringes. This 10-mL vial is available in one strength: U-100.
· Disposable, prefilled injection pen called Humalog Mix KwikPen. This 3-mL pen is available in one strength: U-100. Both Humulin R and Humalog may interact with clonidine, reserpine, guanethidine, and beta-blockers. Humulin R may also interact with albuterol.
Humalog may also interact with antidiabetic agents, salicylates, sulfonamide antibiotics, monoamine oxidase inhibitors, fluoxetine, pramlintide, disopyramide, fibrates, propoxyphene, pentoxifylline, ACE inhibitors, angiotensin II receptor blocking agents, somatostatin analogs, corticosteroids, isoniazid, niacin, estrogens, oral contraceptives, phenothiazines, danazol, diuretics, sympathomimetic agents, somatropin, atypical antipsychotics, glucagon, protease inhibitors, thyroid hormones, lithium salts, alcohol, and pentamidine.
Are Humulin and Humalog the same thing?
Although both Humulin and Humalog are insulins, Humalog is a human insulin analog which means the structure of the insulin has been modified to allow it to be absorbed more quickly than non-analog insulins. By switching around the sequence of two amino acids (proline at B-28 and lysine at B-29), Humalog is absorbed more rapidly and lasts for a shorter period than Humulin. This means Humalog insulin can be administered within 15 minutes of a meal which makes it more convenient to dose and less likely to cause hypoglycemia.
What are the similar side effects of Humulin R and Humalog?
Side effects of Humulin R and Humalog that are similar include low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) (symptoms include headache, hunger, weakness, sweating, tremors, irritability, trouble concentrating, rapid breathing, fast heartbeat, fainting, and seizures [severe hypoglycemia can be fatal]) and injection site reactions (e.g., pain, redness, irritation).
How to store your medication safely.
Do not freeze your medication. Keep your medication out of reach of children and pets. Keep your medication out of direct sunlight. Avoid above room temperature conditions by storing your medication in the refrigerator. Avoid placing your insulin medications anywhere that is prone to accidents occurring such as your jean pockets. Should you have any questions or concerns regarding your medications please do not hesitate to contact us to request to speak to a Pharmacist from our contracted Pharmacy department.
Over time, your insulin needs may change and your doctor may suggest trying something new. It’s normal for your treatment plan to shift over time. Any questions ask our pharmacist such as if you have questions about a certain type of insulin. The pharmacist can explain the pros and cons of different insulin options, and why one may be a better fit for you.
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