Lantus Injection

Generic name: insulin glargine [ IN-su-lin-GLAR-gine ]
Brand names: Lantus, Lantus SoloStar
Drug Form: Subcutaneous injection

Drug class: Insulin


Diabetes often requires meticulous attention to detail and careful management to maintain optimal health. Among the various treatment options available, insulin therapy remains a cornerstone for many individuals with diabetes. Understand Lantus (insulin glargine), a long-acting insulin analog that has become a mainstay in diabetes management. 

Understanding Lantus

Lantus, a brand name for insulin glargine, belongs to the class of long-acting insulin analogs. It is designed to provide a steady and prolonged insulin release, mimicking the body's basal insulin secretion pattern. This characteristic makes Lantus an essential component of insulin therapy, helping to maintain stable blood sugar levels throughout the day and night.

Uses of Lantus

Type 1 Diabetes

Individuals with type 1 diabetes cannot produce insulin. Lantus is a vital replacement for these patients' basal insulin needs, helping regulate blood sugar levels.

Type 2 Diabetes

While type 2 diabetes is often managed initially with oral medications and lifestyle changes, some patients may require insulin therapy as the disease progresses. Lantus is effective in providing basal insulin support for these individuals.

Gestational Diabetes

Pregnancy can induce temporary insulin resistance, leading to gestational diabetes in some women. Lantus may be prescribed to help control blood sugar levels during pregnancy, ensuring the health of both the mother and the baby.

Basal Insulin Therapy

Lantus is a foundational component of basal insulin therapy, providing a steady insulin release between meals and overnight. This helps to prevent fluctuations in blood sugar levels and reduce the risk of hyperglycemia or hypoglycemia.

Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) Prevention

In certain situations, such as during illness or periods of high stress, individuals with diabetes are at risk of developing diabetic ketoacidosisa potentially life-threatening complication characterized by high blood sugar levels and the presence of ketones in the urine. Lantus may help prevent the onset of DKA by maintaining stable blood sugar levels.

How is Lantus Given?

Lantus is administered via subcutaneous injection, typically into the fatty tissue of the thigh, abdomen, or upper arm. Rotating injection sites is important to prevent the development of lipodystrophy, a condition characterized by changes in fat distribution at the injection site. A healthcare professional should demonstrate and supervise the injection technique to ensure proper administration.

Dosing Information

Lantus contains the drug insulin glargine. It comes in two forms: a 10-milliliter (mL) vial containing 100 units of insulin per mL and a 3-mL prefilled SoloStar pen with 100 units of insulin per mL. Tresiba, on the other hand, includes the drug insulin degludec. It comes in three forms: a 10-mL vial that contains 100 units of insulin per mL, a 3-mL prefilled FlexTouch pen that comprises 100 units of insulin per mL, and a 3-mL prefilled FlexTouch pen that shall consist of 200 units of insulin per mL. Like Lantus, dosing for Tresiba is determined by various individual factors and is adjusted accordingly under healthcare professionals' guidance.

Lantus Side Effects

Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Sugar)

Hypoglycemia is a common side effect of insulin therapy, including Lantus. It can occur if the insulin dose is too high or if meals are skipped or delayed. Symptoms of hypoglycemia may include sweating, trembling, confusion, and palpitations.

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Injection Site Reactions

Following Lantus administration, some individuals may experience redness, swelling, or itching at the injection site. These reactions are typically mild and transient.

Weight Gain

Insulin therapy, including Lantus, may lead to weight gain in some individuals. This weight gain is often attributed to improved glycemic control and increased appetite.


Low potassium levels in the blood (hypokalemia) can occur due to insulin therapy. Symptoms may include weakness, muscle cramps, and irregular heartbeat.

Allergic Reactions

While rare, allergic reactions to Lantus can manifest as rash, itching, or difficulty breathing. Severe allergic reactions, known as anaphylaxis, require immediate medical attention.


Fluid retention, leading to swelling in the hands, feet, or ankles, may occur with Lantus use. Monitoring fluid intake and sodium consumption may help alleviate this side effect.


Long-term use of insulin injections can cause changes in fat distribution at the injection site, known as lipodystrophy. Rotating injection sites can help minimize this side effect.

Hypersensitivity Reactions

In rare cases, individuals may develop hypersensitivity reactions to Lantus, requiring medication discontinuation and alternative treatment options.

Insulin Resistance

Prolonged use of insulin therapy, including Lantus, may lead to insulin resistance, a condition in which the body's cells become less responsive to insulin. This may necessitate adjustments in insulin dosage or the addition of other diabetes medications.

Vision Changes

Blurred vision or changes in vision acuity may occur with Lantus use, particularly during fluctuating blood sugar levels. It is essential to monitor blood sugar levels regularly and seek prompt medical attention if vision changes occur.

Warnings for Lantus

Hypoglycemia Risk

Lantus can cause hypoglycemia, mainly if the insulin dose is too high or meals are skipped. Patients should be educated on recognizing the signs and symptoms of hypoglycemia and instructed on appropriate management strategies.

Injection Site Rotation

Regular rotation of injection sites is essential to minimize the risk of lipodystrophy and injection site reactions. Healthcare providers should guide proper injection techniques and site rotation.

Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

It is essential to consult a healthcare professional before using Lantus during pregnancy or breastfeeding. Close monitoring of blood sugar levels and potential adjustments in insulin dosage may be necessary to ensure optimal maternal and fetal health.

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Medical Conditions

Patients with pre-existing medical conditions, such as kidney or liver disease, may require special considerations when using Lantus. Dosage adjustments or additional monitoring may be necessary to prevent adverse effects.

Driving and Operating Machinery

Lantus can cause dizziness or drowsiness, mainly if hypoglycemia occurs. Patients should exercise caution when driving or operating machinery, mostly if their blood sugar levels are uncontrolled.

Interactions with Lantus

Oral Medications

Some oral medications, such as certain antidiabetic drugs and beta-blockers, may interact with Lantus, affecting blood sugar levels. It is vital to inform healthcare providers about all medications being taken to minimize the risk of drug interactions.


Beta-blockers can mask the symptoms of hypoglycemia, making it difficult for patients to recognize and respond to low blood sugar levels. Close monitoring of blood sugar levels is recommended when using beta-blockers concomitantly with Lantus.


Thiazolidinediones, a class of oral antidiabetic medications, may increase the risk of hypoglycemia when combined with Lantus. Healthcare providers should adjust insulin dosage accordingly and closely monitor blood sugar levels.


Alcohol consumption can affect blood sugar levels, leading to fluctuations that may increase the risk of hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia. Patients should be advised to drink alcohol in moderation and monitor their blood sugar levels closely.

Other Insulins

Concurrent use of Lantus with other insulins or antidiabetic medications may require dosage adjustments and close monitoring of blood sugar levels. Healthcare providers should assess patients' treatment regimens and make appropriate recommendations based on their needs.

What Other Drugs Will Affect Lantus?

In addition to the interactions mentioned above, several other medications can affect the efficacy or safety of Lantus. These include corticosteroids, thyroid hormones, and certain antibiotics. Patients should inform their healthcare providers about all medicines they are taking to minimize the risk of adverse drug interactions.

Alternatives to Lantus

While Lantus is widely used and effective for many individuals with diabetes, several alternative basal insulins are available. These include Levemir (insulin detemir), Tresiba (insulin degludec), and Basaglar (a biosimilar to Lantus). Each has unique characteristics and may be preferred in specific clinical scenarios. Healthcare providers can help patients select the most appropriate insulin regimen based on their needs and preferences.

When to Visit the Doctor?

Regular monitoring of blood sugar levels and periodic visits to healthcare providers are essential for individuals with diabetes. Patients should seek medical attention if they experience persistent high blood sugar levels, severe hypoglycemia requiring assistance, symptoms of diabetic ketoacidosis (such as nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and confusion), or signs of allergic reactions to Lantus.

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Lantus (insulin glargine) is crucial in managing diabetes. It provides long-acting insulin therapy to help regulate blood sugar levels. While it offers numerous benefits, patients must know its potential side effects, interactions, and proper administration techniques. Close collaboration with healthcare providers is critical to achieving optimal glycemic control and ensuring the overall well-being of individuals with diabetes.


Can Lantus be mixed with other insulins?

No, Lantus should not be mixed with other insulins. It is administered separately to maintain its long-acting effect.

Can Lantus be used in children?

Yes, Lantus can be used in children with diabetes under the supervision of a healthcare professional. The dosage may vary based on age, weight, and insulin requirements.

Is Lantus available over the counter?

No, Lantus is a prescription medication unavailable over the counter. Patients must obtain a prescription from a healthcare provider to purchase Lantus.

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