Apidra® is a fast-acting insulin regulator for type 1 diabetes in adults and type 2 diabetes in adults and children. Generically known as insulin glulisine (rDNA origin) injection, it is a manufactured version of human insulin, used to stabilize the rise in blood sugar that occurs after meals. This is done by aiding in the movement of sugar from the blood into other organs, where it will be turned into energy, as well as stopping the production of sugars in the liver. Apidra® is normally used in combination with a longer-lasting insulin or an insulin pump.
A liquid form of insulin, Apidra® is injected under the skin usually 15 minutes before eating or within 20 minutes of starting to eat. Patients taking this drug for diabetes treatment should not change the amount of the dose without consulting with their doctor first. If a patient has missed a dose, he or she should check their blood sugar level then contact his or her doctor over whether to use it.
Although Apidra® is used for diabetes treatment, it is not a cure. It is recommended that Apidra® be used along with diet, exercise and other diabetes medication. Patients who have low blood sugar or previous allergies to any of the ingredients in Apidra® should not use it.
Common side effects of Apidra® include either hypoglycemia, which is low blood sugar, or hyperglycemia, which is high blood sugar. This can be life threatening and could cause damage to the heart or brain. Symptoms of hyperglycemia might include weakness, extreme hunger and thirst, blurred vision and frequent urination. Patients who develop these symptoms should contact their doctors immediately. If not treated it can develop into diabetic ketoacidosis, which might lead to shortness of breath, stomach pain and decreased consciousness.
Symptoms of hypoglycemia might include shakiness, light-headedness, headache, pale skin, hunger and difficulty sleeping. Patients experiencing these symptoms should consult with their doctor on treatment. These patients generally will be told to check their blood sugar level and eat or drink something that contains sugar. More severe symptoms of hypoglycemia might include seizures, confusion and loss of consciousness. Patients experiencing these symptoms should get medical care immediately.
Other side effects of Apidra® might include blurred vision, increased heartbeat, rash, shaking and sweating. Less commonly, an allergic reaction to insulin can occur. Before starting Apidra®, patients should tell their doctors about any other medications they are taking, as well as about any medical conditions they have or whether they are pregnant, are trying to become pregnant or are breastfeeding.