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Precautions and Warnings With Insulin Glulisine

There are several precautions and warnings with insulin glulisine to be aware of before starting treatment. For example, the medication can cause dangerously low blood sugar levels, so you and those around should know the warning signs for low blood sugar and how to respond. Other precautions and warnings involve the risks associated with taking insulin glulisine during pregnancy, while breastfeeding, or if you have certain other health conditions.

Insulin Glulisine: What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider?

Talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking insulin glulisine (Apidra®) if you have:
  • Liver disease, such as liver failure, cirrhosis, or hepatitis
  • Kidney disease, such as kidney failure (renal failure)
  • Any allergies, including allergies to foods, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
  • Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant
  • Breastfeeding.
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about any other medications you are taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Specific Precautions and Warnings With Insulin Glulisine

Warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking insulin glulisine include the following:
  • If you use insulin glulisine in an insulin pump, do not dilute it or mix it with other insulins.
  • If you inject the medication, it may be mixed with NPH insulin, but not with any other types of insulin.
  • Insulin glulisine is used to control blood sugar levels after a meal. Once you take a dose, you must begin eating the meal within 15 minutes.
  • Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) is the most common (and usually most serious) side effect of insulin medications, including insulin glulisine. Make sure you and those around you know how to identify your warning signs for low blood sugar and how to respond. You must test your blood sugar levels regularly while taking insulin glulisine or any other insulin. Low blood sugar levels can be a life-threatening problem.
  • Liver and kidney problems may affect your insulin glulisine dosage. Also, changes in diet or exercise, illness, or stress may affect your blood sugar levels in such a way that your dosage needs to be adjusted.
  • Make sure your healthcare provider shows you exactly how to inject insulin glulisine, how to store the drug, and how to dispose of your used needles.
  • This diabetes medication can potentially interact with several other medications (see Drug Interactions With Insulin Glulisine).
  • Insulin glulisine is considered a pregnancy Category C medication. This means that it may not be safe for use during pregnancy, although the full risks are not known (see Apidra and Pregnancy).
  • It is not known if insulin glulisine passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking the drug (see Apidra and Breastfeeding).
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