Alternatives to Lantus

rated by 0 users
This post has 14 Replies | 3 Followers

Top 150 Contributor
Male
Posts 5
daveincolorado Posted: Tue, Jan 19 2010 3:36 PM

I recently had to change insurance companies and now have Kaiser.  The Kaiser drug formulary does not include Lantus, which i have been taking for a couple of years with good results.  Does anyone know of a comparable alternative to Lantus?  I haven't had my first appointment with my Kaiser doc yet and would like to be a little bit prepared to discuss options.

Thanks!

Top 10 Contributor
Male
Posts 432
Ron AKA replied on Tue, Jan 19 2010 10:01 PM

I think Levemir is a good alternative. However, it probably works best if taken in two split doses per day. It tends to be more predictable in activity from day to day.

Ron

Not a med prof. Just diabetic type 2 on Prandin, Levemir, ramipril, bisoprolol, & Crestor. Diag. Feb/01.

"I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that don't work." - Thomas Edison

Top 10 Contributor
Female
Posts 384
jen1229 replied on Wed, Jan 20 2010 8:05 AM

Most people take levemir once a day like Lantus.  There are some that find it beneficial to split the dose, but that does not mean it is the way for everyone.  I think one needs to try it first and see how it works for them and then discuss splitting the dose with their doctor.  We are not professionals and we are not here to give people medial advice.  We are here to give opinions and provide support to each other.  That said, I take Levemir once a day at bedtime and have absolutely no problem with it.  As Ron said it is more predictable in activity and there are less lows.  When I first started on it last January ('09) I was taking 68 units a day.  However, since losing 72 pounds I am now down to 40 units and continuing to reduce the amount as I lose weight.

Jen  - LevemirConfused and Novalog Wink A1c 5.8

 

 

Top 150 Contributor
Male
Posts 5

I appreciate the responses.  It is frustrating to have to change insurance, then find out your meds are covered.  Neither my Actospluc Met nor Lantus are on Kaiser's formulary.  Now I find out that the Levemir is also not covered; but it sounds like a good option for Lantus.

thanks to both of you.

Top 10 Contributor
Male
Posts 432
Ron AKA replied on Wed, Jan 20 2010 11:16 AM

Jen, I suspect you are a type 2? If so, type 2's tend to be more tolerant of variations in insulin activity, in that your pancreas can still control BG to some degree. However, type 1 diabetics are far less tolerant of an activity mismatch with carb digestion. I suspect not too many will get satisfactory control with 1 shot of Levemir per day for a basal.

The other thing to remember is that Levemir is quite dose sensitive. The more you take, the longer it lasts. A small dose peaks early, while a large dose peaks later and is more sustained. Typically type 1's use far less insulin than a type 2, so the activity curve will be shorter and more peak like.

Ron

Not a med prof. Just diabetic type 2 on Prandin, Levemir, ramipril, bisoprolol, & Crestor. Diag. Feb/01.

"I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that don't work." - Thomas Edison

Top 10 Contributor
Male
Posts 432
Ron AKA replied on Wed, Jan 20 2010 11:17 AM

Dave, what long acting insulins do they cover?

Ron

Not a med prof. Just diabetic type 2 on Prandin, Levemir, ramipril, bisoprolol, & Crestor. Diag. Feb/01.

"I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that don't work." - Thomas Edison

Top 150 Contributor
Male
Posts 5

It's a pretty short list: Humulin, novolin 70 30, n, and r, and novolog.  not all are long acting, right?  I've only ever taken Lantus, so don't know much about other types.

Top 10 Contributor
Male
Posts 432
Ron AKA replied on Wed, Jan 20 2010 2:49 PM

You may want to put up an argument for a long acting insulin replacement. See the list below. About the only other one I'm aware of is Ultralente, and I see it has been discontinued. You may be forced to go to a mix. That will require doctor advice on how to adjust to using a mixed insulin.

http://www.childrenwithdiabetes.com/d_0n_110.htm

Ron

Not a med prof. Just diabetic type 2 on Prandin, Levemir, ramipril, bisoprolol, & Crestor. Diag. Feb/01.

"I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that don't work." - Thomas Edison

Top 150 Contributor
Male
Posts 5

Thanks for that link - very helpful.  I definitely plan to make my case to my new doc when i see him.  Kaiser has a form to request additions to its formulary; another thing I'm planning to look into.

thanks!

Top 10 Contributor
Female
Posts 384
jen1229 replied on Thu, Jan 21 2010 8:04 AM

Ron:

In response to your post, I don't know what Type I  am, I suspect II but I became diabetic following an acute attack of pancreatitis  (which has since been diagnosed as chronic).  Since pancreatitis causes damage to the pancreas It can kill the cells that secrete insulin.  I'm finding however, that as I lose weight I am using the insulin I take more efficiently. 

Dave:  Have you considered a pump?  You could use Novalog only in a pump because it is used for both basal and mealtime boluses.  Perhaps you should inquire about it. Also, as was stated above, if you contact the drug company, most have programs for people who cannot afford to purchase the product.

Jen  - LevemirConfused and Novalog Wink A1c 5.8

 

 

Top 10 Contributor
Posts 169
Madman replied on Thu, Jan 21 2010 8:46 AM

I agree that looking into a pump might be the way to go.  Seems Kaiser may be pushing for that anyway with the insulins they have on formulary.

Top 150 Contributor
Male
Posts 5

It's not that i can't afford the meds; I am hoping to work with Kaiser so they will cover the Lantus.  As to the pump, i would resist that as long as possible, like i did when insulin was first suggested to me - it took me a year or so to decide on that.  But if it would help more, then......?

Top 10 Contributor
Posts 169
Madman replied on Thu, Jan 21 2010 3:44 PM

I work with 3 people who use pumps...they all love them and wouldn't go back unless they absolutely had to.

Personally, I just started using levemir, and am rather pleased and wondering just why I was so hesitant to do so.

Top 10 Contributor
Male
Posts 134
RobertIA replied on Thu, Jan 21 2010 4:11 PM

Yes, Madman, levemir works well for many people.  I am one that it causes problems for so I am happy to stay with lantus.  This just reinforced for me the fact that what works for me may not work for you.  Therefore, I will always suggest that people find whats for them and use it.  Experimenting is always good and testing different meds and insulins with the doctors supervision is something I have done.  Sometimes a med or insulin can stop being effective for someone and the quicker a change can be done - the better.

Bob

Type 2 (10/2003)   Lantus and Novalog   Now added Metformin      Retired

 

Not Ranked
Posts 1

The insurance board should be your first stop.  Since you already take Lantus, I would think that they will let you stay with the medication.  My insurance company did that for me when I wanted to stay with the one touch glucose monitors. 

D

Page 1 of 1 (15 items) | RSS