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Side Effects of NPH Insulin/Regular Insulin

Potential NPH insulin/regular insulin side effects include skin thickening or pitting at the injection site and skin reactions at the injection site (such as redness or itching). While these side effects are often mild, there are also some potentially serious side effects that require prompt medical attention, such as dangerously low blood sugar.

An Introduction to NPH Insulin/Regular Insulin Side Effects

As with any medicine, side effects are possible with NPH insulin/regular insulin (Humulin® 70/30, Novolin® 70/30). While some of the side effects are relatively minor, others are potentially dangerous. Learning how to monitor your blood sugar and adjust your NPH insulin/regular insulin dosage as necessary can prevent most of the serious problems.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with NPH insulin/regular insulin. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list of NPH insulin/regular insulin side effects with you.)

Serious Side Effects of NPH Insulin/Regular Insulin

Some NPH insulin/regular insulin side effects are potentially serious and should be reported immediately to your healthcare provider. Some of the warning signs of these serious side effects include:
  • Symptoms of dangerously low blood sugar, such as:
    • Changes in behavior, such as irritability or mood swings
    • Loss of coordination
    • Cold sweats
    • Difficulty speaking
    • Extreme hunger
    • Blurry vision
    • Dizziness
    • Shakiness
    • Sweating
    • Confusion
    • Seizures
    • Unconsciousness
  • Symptoms of diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), caused by prolonged high blood sugar if your dose is too low (this is actually a result of the disease itself, not really a side effect):
    • Increased thirst and urination
    • Nausea and vomiting
    • Labored breathing
    • Fruity, sweet-smelling breath
    • Fever
    • Confusion
    • Unconsciousness
  • Signs of an allergic reaction, such as:
    • Hives
    • Itching
    • An unexplained rash
    • Swelling of the mouth or throat
    • Wheezing or other difficulty breathing.
Be sure those around you (such as relatives, friends, and coworkers) know how to recognize and respond to your particular signs of low blood sugar, since you may be too confused or disoriented to recognize and adequately respond. Different people may have different signs of low blood sugar.
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NPH Insulin/Regular Insulin Information

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