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Side Effects of Insulin Glargine

Common side effects of insulin glargine include low blood sugar levels or reactions at the injection site. However, most people tolerate it well, and if side effects do occur, they are typically minor and easily treated. If you experience more serious insulin glargine side effects, such seizures, difficulty breathing, or difficulty speaking, you should immediately report them to your healthcare provider.

An Introduction to Side Effects of Insulin Glargine

As with any medicine, side effects are possible with insulin glargine (Lantus®). However, not everyone who takes the drug will experience side effects. In fact, many people tolerate it quite well. If side effects do occur, they are often minor and either require no treatment or are easily treated by you or your healthcare provider.
 
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with insulin glargine. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list of insulin glargine side effects with you.)
 

Serious Side Effects of Insulin Glargine: Warning Signs

Insulin glargine has been thoroughly studied in clinical trials. In these studies, the side effects that occurred in a group of people taking the drug were documented and compared to the side effects that occurred in another group of people taking a different form of insulin, usually NPH insulin.
 
While studies for most medications compare the medication to a placebo (a "sugar pill" that does not contain any active ingredients), this is not usually possible for diabetes medications like insulin glargine. It would be unethical to give a placebo to people with diabetes, as it is essential to keep blood sugar under control. This is why insulin glargine was compared to other insulins rather than to a placebo.
 
Some side effects with insulin glargine are potentially serious and should be reported immediately to your healthcare provider. Warning signs of these serious side effects include:
 
  • Symptoms of low blood sugar, such as:
 
    • Sweating
    • Dizziness
    • Cold sweats
    • Shakiness
    • Extreme hunger
    • Blurry vision
    • Changes in behavior, such as irritability
    • Loss of coordination
    • Difficulty speaking
    • Confusion
    • Seizures
    • Unconsciousness
 
  • Signs of an allergic reaction, such as:
 
    • An unexplained rash
    • Hives
    • Itching
    • Swelling of the mouth or throat
    • Wheezing
    • Difficulty breathing.
 
Some people may have different signs of low blood sugar. Make sure those around you know how to recognize your particular signs, as you may be too confused, due to low blood sugar, to recognize them and adequately respond.
 
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Insulin Glargine Drug Information

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