Your pancreas makes a hormone called insulin which enables the conversion of glucose into energy form. This hormone also enables a fine balance of glucose level in blood. Inability to make ample level of this hormone leads to a condition known as diabetes mellitus. Type 1 form of diabetes is an autoimmune condition wherein your immunity system attacks the cells that make insulin. On the other hand, type 2 form of diabetes makes your system to resists the effects of insulin. In this light, what are the key differences between Novolog and Humalog – two forms of insulin?

Insulin shots help manage both type 1 and type 2 forms of diabetes. As people living with type 1 diabetes cannot make this hormone, regular shots of insulin are a must to keep glucose level at an optimal level. Those with type 2 form of diabetes can control glucose level through a well-balanced diet plan, workouts and intake of a few drugs. However, if these approaches do not provide optimal results, insulin shots are administered onto people with type 2 diabetes as well.

What is Novolog?

This is drug used for managing blood sugar level. This has the approval of the food and drug administration (FDA). It is prescribed for use during mealtimes; its main purpose is to arrest sudden increases in sugar level, experienced while you are having a meal. Novolog is a rapid-action drug and is a lab-made form of insulin. The key ingredient used in this drug is called insulin aspart, known for its faster action in restoring an apt balance of blood sugar.

What is Humalog?

Like Novolog, this drug is also fast-acting insulin (man-made). It starts working in less than 15 minutes. This can be used for both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. However, among children, it is never administered onto those aged less than 3 years. The key chemical used here is insulin lispro. If you are living with low blood sugar or a medical condition called hypoglycemia, you are advised to tell your treating physician of such pre-existing conditions.

What are the differences between Novolog and Humalog?

Both are known for their faster action and can start working within minutes. While Humalog is not offered to children aged less than 3 years, novolog can be administered onto children aged 2 years and above. These two forms of insulin are often prescribed with either intermediate-action or long-action forms of insulin.

Insulin has two (2) chains of polypeptides, namely A and B. Humalog works on position $ 29 of the B chain of polypeptide while novolog works on position # 28 of this chain. These may seem a minor difference; but, these are capable of triggering a big change in the absorption rates of these two drugs. The key benefits of these drugs include peak level can be quickly attained i.e., faster than natural from of insulin, a finer control of postprandial glucose level is possible and also, risks of onset of hypoglcemia (after a few hours) are under control.

Studies done on smaller user groups have shown no major differences between these two forms of insulin. On the costing front, both are priced at almost the same level. Cost per millilitre (ml) hovers in the range of $27 – $29. Generic versions of both these drugs are not available yet. These can be procured with ease either as vials or as prefilled cartridges. It is a good practice to refrigerate Novolog and Humalog to retain their efficacy levels all through their shelf life.

In sum, the key difference between Novolog and Humalog is the positions of the B chain of polypeptide each drug works upon. Also, Novolog can be administered onto children aged 2 years and above; on the other hand, Humalog is prescribed only for children aged 3 years and more. In order to have more details about these two drugs, you are advised to talk to a qualified medical practitioner.

Leave a Reply