What should I watch for?
Visit your health care professional or doctor for regular checks on your progress.
Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this medicine affects you. Alcohol may interfere with the effect of this medicine. Avoid alcoholic drinks.
A test called the HbA1C (A1C) will be monitored. This is a simple blood test. It measures your blood sugar control over the last 2 to 3 months. You will receive this test every 3 to 6 months.
Learn how to check your blood sugar. Learn the symptoms of low and high blood sugar and how to manage them.
Always carry a quick-source of sugar with you in case you have symptoms of low blood sugar. Examples include hard sugar candy or glucose tablets. Make sure others know that you can choke if you eat or drink when you develop serious symptoms of low blood sugar, such as seizures or unconsciousness. They must get medical help at once.
Tell your doctor or health care professional if you have high blood sugar. You might need to change the dose of your medicine. If you are sick or exercising more than usual, you might need to change the dose of your medicine.
Make sure that you have the right kind of syringe for the type of insulin you use. Try not to change the brand and type of insulin or syringe unless your health care professional or doctor tells you to. Switching insulin brand or type can cause dangerously high or low blood sugar. Always keep an extra supply of insulin, syringes, and needles on hand. Use a syringe one time only. Throw away syringe and needle in a closed container to prevent accidental needle sticks.
Insulin pens and cartridges should never be shared. Even if the needle is changed, sharing may result in passing of viruses like hepatitis or HIV.
Wear a medical ID bracelet or chain, and carry a card that describes your disease and details of your medicine and dosage times.
Side Effects to watch for
Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
- allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
- breathing problems
- signs and symptoms of high blood sugar such as dizziness, dry mouth, dry skin, fruity breath, nausea, stomach pain, increased hunger or thirst, increased urination
- signs and symptoms of low blood sugar such as feeling anxious, confusion, dizziness, increased hunger, unusually weak or tired, sweating, shakiness, cold, irritable, headache, blurred vision, fast heartbeat, loss of consciousness
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
- increase or decrease in fatty tissue under the skin due to overuse of a particular injection site
- itching, burning, swelling, or rash at site where injected
What may interact with this drug?
- other medicines for diabetes
Many medications may cause an increase or decrease in blood sugar, these include:
- alcohol containing beverages
- aspirin and aspirin-like drugs
- female hormones, like estrogens or progestins and birth control pills
- heart medicines
- male hormones or anabolic steroids
- medicines for weight loss
- medicines for allergies, asthma, cold, or cough
- medicines for mental problems
- medicines called MAO Inhibitors like Nardil, Parnate, Marplan, Eldepryl
- NSAIDs, medicines for pain and inflammation, like ibuprofen or naproxen
- quinolone antibiotics like ciprofloxacin, levofloxacin, ofloxacin
- some herbal dietary supplements
- steroid medicines like prednisone or cortisone
- thyroid medicine
Some medications can hide the warning symptoms of low blood sugar. You may need to monitor your blood sugar more closely if you are taking one of these medications. These include: