Basaglar is a diabetes medication that is used in adults and children ages six and older who have type 1 diabetes and adults who have type 2 diabetes. It’s a long-acting insulin medication that assists the body in lowering the level of sugar in the blood. Insulin is a hormone made by the body that lowers blood sugar levels. It helps the body absorb and store glucose that comes from the bloodstream. It also keeps your liver from creating more glucose.

Basaglar is the brand name of a medication called insulin glargine. There is no generic to this medication, so it tends to be high-priced. This medication is injected under the skin. It comes in pre-filled pens that are already loaded with insulin. It takes this medication about 90 minutes after the injection to start working. It works for about 24 hours. Once injected, the insulin is slowly released into the blood for a full day.

Basaglar Products

This medication is available in different ways, with Kwikpens being a highly popular product. Your doctor will decide what the best Basaglar product is for you and your health.

Basaglar Kwikpens

Kwikpens are pre-filled pens that come with 3 mL of the medication which is about 300 units of it. You can adjust the dosage of the pen to match the prescribed amount. The units can be set from one to 80. The pens are disposable and single use. You may have to inject yourself more than once if you’re prescribed more than 80 units.

Basaglar Kwikpens Cartridges

Basaglar Kwikpens don’t need cartridges because they are already pre-filled with medication. Cartridges are available for use in other pens, but not in the Kwikpen.

Precautions and Warnings of Basaglar

This medication may cause a number of health problems, but many patients don’t get these problems. Certain groups have a higher risk of severe effects from Basaglar. If you’re allergic to this medication, don’t take it, and be sure to tell your doctor about your reaction. The symptoms of an allergic reaction can include a rash, trouble breathing, swelling of the face, tongue, or throat, and itching.

Don’t share your pens or needles with anyone else, as serious diseases and infections can develop.

It’s also possible to get low blood sugar from taking this medication. The risk factor is higher if you’re over 65, take other diabetes medications, have problems with your kidneys or liver, or drink alcohol. It’s not recommended to drink alcohol while taking this medication. When low blood sugar happens, it can cause you to have a rapid heartbeat, confusion, shakiness, hunger, and sweating. You should be ready with glucose tablets or another way to get glucose in case this happens.

Getting low levels of potassium can also happen. This is more likely if you’re taking any medication that increases your urination or you take laxatives. Your doctor should monitor your potassium levels to make sure they don’t get too low. If you do get low potassium, you could experience kidney problems, weakness, digestive problems, muscle cramps, or abnormal heartbeats.

There is also the risk of swelling and heart failure. Having a lot of swelling can make your heart failure worse. If you already have heart failure or you take PPAR-gamma agonists when you start this medication, this can lead to heart problems.

Diabetic ketoacidosis is a serious diabetes complication. If you develop this condition, or you already have it, you shouldn’t take Basaglar. There are other diabetes medications that you may need to take instead.

When you take Basaglar, this is just one part of the complete treatment program that should be in place. Along with taking this medication, you should also be exercising regularly and eating a healthy, balanced diet that keeps your weight under control. Before taking this medication, make sure that your doctor has your full medical history. If you have heart failure, liver disease, or kidney disease, make sure your doctor knows about it.

Basaglar Side Effects

Many side effects are possible when you take this medication. Be sure to tell your doctor about any side effects you’re having. You may need to switch to a different medication or have your dosage changed.

Common Side Effects

With both type 1 and type 2 diabetes, these are the most common side effects:

  • Common cold
  • Infection
  • Respiratory tract infection
  • Low blood sugar
  • Weight gain
  • Injection site skin changes
  • Skin rash or itchy skin
  • Swelling in the lower legs or feet

Serious Side Effects

These symptoms tend to be mild, and they may go away after your body adjusts to taking Basaglar. Some of the more serious side effects can include:

  • Allergic reaction
  • Clouding of the lens of the eye
  • Back pain
  • Depression
  • Low potassium
  • Sinus inflammation
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Back pain
  • High blood pressure

Drug Interactions With Basaglar

There are many medications and classes of medications that can interact badly with Basaglar. Some of these include:

  • Anabolic steroids
  • Birth control pills such as Seasonique and Yaz
  • Antipsychotics such as clozapine and risperidone
  • Bismuth subsalicylate
  • Beta-blockers such as sotalol and Tenormin
  • Buserelin
  • Clarithromycin such as Biaxin
  • Some diuretics such as furosemide
  • Corticosteroids
  • Decongestants
  • Estrogens
  • Fenofibrate
  • Many diabetes medications such as insulin and metformin
  • Antivirals for hepatitis C such as voxilaprevir
  • Protease inhibitors for HIV such as ritonavir (Norvir) and atazanavir
  • Lithium
  • Progestins such as progesterone
  • Mifepristone
  • MAO inhibitors such as phenelzine and moclobemide
  • Niacin
  • Thyroid replacement therapy
  • Quinolone antibiotics such as ciprofloxacin
  • Sulfa antibiotics
  • Tramadol

Basaglar Strengths and Dosages

Basaglar Kwikpens are pre-filled pens that come with 3 mL of medication with 100 units of medication per mL. This makes each pen filled with 300 units of medication. There is also a Tempo pen that comes in the same strength as the Kwikpens. The only difference is that it’s a smart pen that communicates with your phone about how much insulin you’ve taken.

Your prescription will be in units so that you can easily set the dosage on the pen. It is typically prescribed at 10 units or fewer to start with and then gradually raised to where it will do the most good.

Basaglar Kwikpens:3 mL/300 units
Basaglar Tempo pens:3 mL/300 units

Cost of Basaglar in America

This is a relatively expensive medication because there is no generic for it yet. A box of five Basaglar Kwikpens is about $250.  A box of five Tempo pens is about $340. These are retail prices, and there are ways to get lower prices for this medication. Manufacturer Eli Lilly has a program to help patients with the cost of diabetes medications.

Basaglar Alternatives

There are other long-acting insulin medications on the market that can be good alternatives for some patients. These include Lantus brand insulin glargine and Levemir, also called insulin detemir.

FAQs of Basaglar

How to Use Basaglar Kwikpen?

Pull off the pen cap and swipe the rubber seal with alcohol. Choose a new needle. Then, take the paper tab off that’s on the outside of the needle shield. Put the needle on the pen and screw it into place. Take off the inner needle shield. The injection can be used on your upper buttocks, thighs, upper arms, or stomach. Choose a different site each time you inject it.

What is Basaglar?

Basaglar is a type of long-acting insulin for diabetics. It’s an injection that delivers insulin glargine.

How many units of Basaglar should I take?

The number of units is strictly up to your doctor. Don’t use more or less than is prescribed without your doctor’s approval.

Who makes Basaglar?

It’s manufactured by Eli Lilly.

How long can Basaglar be unrefrigerated?

Once you’ve used a pen, you can store it at room temperature. Until then, it should be kept in the fridge for as long as possible. It still may be useable if it’s kept at room temperature for up to 28 days, but it will work better if it’s kept refrigerated until use.

How many pens come in a box of Basaglar Kwikpens?

They come with five Kwikpens.

What is the difference between Basaglar and Lantus?

Both of these medications are insulin glargine, but each of them is made differently. The chemical structure is the same, but different manufacturing methods can lead to slight variations. Lantus has a SoloStar injection pen as well as being available as a vial that’s used with a syringe. Basaglar only comes in injection pens, the Kwikpen and the smart Tempo pen.

Where to inject Basaglar?

This medication can be injected into your upper buttocks, thighs, upper arms, or stomach.

What is comparable to Basaglar?

It is very much like Lantus, another medication that uses insulin glargine.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The information provided here is for educational purposes only and is not intended to serve as medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment recommendations. It should not be taken as an endorsement of any specific medication or treatment. Individual health conditions and responses to treatment can vary greatly; therefore, this information should not be seen as a guarantee of safety, suitability, or effectiveness for any particular individual. Always consult with a healthcare professional for personalized medical advice and before making any decisions regarding your health or treatment plans.

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