Apidra - Warnings insulin glulisine

The FDA requires all potential medication risks for APIDRA (insulin glulisine injection, solution) be disclosed to consumers, no matter how rare. Here are the warnings and precautions for Apidra.

Warnings & Precautions

never share an apidra solostar pen or syringe or needle between patients

APIDRA SoloStar pens must never be shared between patients, even if the needle is changed. Patients using APIDRA vials must never reuse or share needles or syringes with another person. Sharing poses a risk for transmission of blood-borne pathogens.

hyperglycemia or hypoglycemia with changes in insulin regimen

Changes in insulin, insulin strength, manufacturer, type, or method of administration may affect glycemic control and predispose to hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia. These changes should be made cautiously and only under close medical supervision and the frequency of blood glucose monitoring should be increased. For patients with type 2 diabetes, dosage adjustments in concomitant oral antidiabetic treatment may be needed.

hypoglycemia

Hypoglycemia is the most common adverse reaction of all insulin therapies, including APIDRA [see Adverse Reactions (6.1)]. Severe hypoglycemia can cause seizures, may lead to unconsciousness, may be life-threatening, or cause death. Hypoglycemia can impair concentration ability and reaction time; this may place an individual and others at risk in situations where these abilities are important (e.g., driving or operating other machinery). APIDRA, or any insulin, should not be used during episodes of hypoglycemia [see Contraindications (4)].

Hypoglycemia can happen suddenly and symptoms may differ in each individual and change over time in the same individual. Symptomatic awareness of hypoglycemia may be less pronounced in patients with longstanding diabetes, in patients with diabetic nerve disease, in patients using medications that block the sympathetic nervous system (e.g., beta-blockers) [see Drug Interactions (7)], or in patients who experience recurrent hypoglycemia.

Risk Factors for Hypoglycemia

The risk of hypoglycemia after an injection is related to the duration of action of the insulin and, in general, is highest when the glucose lowering effect of the insulin is maximal. The timing of hypoglycemia usually reflects the time-action profile of the administered insulin formulation. As with all insulin preparations, the glucose lowering effect time course of APIDRA may vary in different individuals or at different times in the same individual and depends on many conditions, including the area of injection as well as the injection site blood supply and temperature [see Clinical Pharmacology (12.2)].

Other factors which may increase the risk of hypoglycemia include changes in meal pattern (e.g., macronutrient content or timing of meals), changes in level of physical activity, or changes to coadministered medication [see Drug Interactions (7)]. Patients with renal or hepatic impairment may be at higher risk of hypoglycemia [see Use in Specific Populations (8.6, 8.7)].

Risk Mitigation Strategies for Hypoglycemia

Patients and caregivers must be educated to recognize and manage hypoglycemia. Self-monitoring of blood glucose plays an essential role in the prevention and management of hypoglycemia. In patients at higher risk for hypoglycemia and patients who have reduced symptomatic awareness of hypoglycemia, increased frequency of blood glucose monitoring is recommended.

hypoglycemia due to medication errors

Accidental mix-ups between insulin products have been reported. To avoid medication errors between APIDRA and other insulins, instruct patients to always check the insulin label before each injection.

hypokalemia

All insulin products, including APIDRA, cause a shift in potassium from the extracellular to intracellular space, possibly leading to hypokalemia. Untreated hypokalemia may cause respiratory paralysis, ventricular arrhythmia, and death. Use caution in patients who may be at risk for hypokalemia (e.g., patients using potassium-lowering medications, patients taking medications sensitive to serum potassium concentrations).

hypersensitivity & allergic reactions

Severe, life-threatening, generalized allergy, including anaphylaxis, can occur with insulin products, including APIDRA [see Adverse Reactions (6.1)]. If hypersensitivity reactions occur, discontinue APIDRA; treat per standard of care and monitor until symptoms and signs resolve. APIDRA is contraindicated in patients who have had a hypersensitivity reaction to it or any of its excipients [see Contraindications (4)].

fluid retention & heart failure with concomitant use of ppar-gamma agonists

Thiazolidinediones (TZDs), which are peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) gamma agonists, can cause dose-related fluid retention, particularly when used in combination with insulin. Fluid retention may lead to or exacerbate heart failure. Patients treated with insulin, including APIDRA and a PPAR-gamma agonist should be observed for signs and symptoms of heart failure. If heart failure develops, it should be managed according to current standards of care, and discontinuation or dose reduction of the PPAR-gamma agonist must be considered.

hyperglycemia & ketoacidosis due to insulin pump device malfunction

Malfunction of the insulin pump or insulin infusion set or insulin degradation can rapidly lead to hyperglycemia and ketoacidosis. Prompt identification and correction of the cause of hyperglycemia or ketosis is necessary. Interim subcutaneous injections with APIDRA may be required. Patients using continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion pump therapy must be trained to administer insulin by injection and have alternate insulin therapy available in case of pump failure [see How Supplied/Storage and Handling (16.2)].

This drug label information is as submitted to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and is intended for informational purposes only. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911. You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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