What are Humulin R vials?
These vials are filled with Humulin R insulin, a brand name of Regular insulin. Regular insulin is a short-acting insulin analog. It is an injectable medication used to control blood sugar levels in the treatment of diabetes. It contains zinc-insulin crystals dissolved in a clear fluid.
What is it used for?
Humulin R is used alongside a healthy diet and regular exercise to help improve blood sugar level control in adults and children with type 1 and type 2 diabetes mellitus. It is also used to treat gestational diabetes and diabetic complications, such as hyperosmolar hyperglycemic and diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) states. It may also be used in combination with glucose (sugar) to help lower potassium levels in those with hyperkalemia (high blood potassium).
How does it work?
Humulin-R is a short-acting insulin analog that begins working 30 minutes after injection, and it can last approximately 6 to 8 hours. It can give you protection against the blood sugar spikes that occur after meals, if you take it 30 to 60 minutes before the meal.
This medication works by mimicking the action of human insulin, which is normally produced in your pancreas. Insulin lowers your blood sugar levels by absorbing sugar from your blood and converting it into cells that your fat, liver and muscles can use. Your doctor has prescribed you with insulin injections to control your diabetes because it can keep your blood sugar at a healthy level and keep your urine as free of sugar as possible.
Common negative effects may include:
Less common negative effects may include:
- Injection site reactions
- Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA)
- Insulin allergy
How to take this medication
To cover your insulin needs for meals, Humulin R should be taken 30 to 60 minutes before eating. The drug should be taken subcutaneously (under the skin) in either the thighs, buttocks, the upper arms or abdomen. Your injection sites should be switched to make sure that the same site is not used more than about once a month. Make sure to not enter any blood vessels or muscle tissue. Your vial should be clear and colorless. Do not use it if it appears thickened, cloudy, slightly colored, or if solid particles are noticeable.
Subcutaneous administration of Humulin-R is typically given three or more times a day before meals. Your dose and dosing schedule will likely be personalized and determined by your doctor for your individual needs. An average range of total daily insulin needs for maintenance therapy of insulin-treated diabetic patients that do not have severe insulin resistance is between 0.5 and 1 unit/kg/day.
If you are taking insulin for the first time, you should be carefully monitored by your doctor.
If you are switching from an animal-source insulin to Humulin R, you may need a change in dosage. Adjustments may be made with your first dose or over a period of several weeks. Any changes in insulin should always be made carefully and under your doctor’s supervision.
A short-acting insulin like Humulin-R is often combined with long-acting insulin, or with an insulin infusion pump, to help maintain sufficient blood sugar level control.
Warnings and Precautions
It should not be used:
- If you are allergic to this drug or any of the ingredients
- If you have hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)
- For treatment of diabetic coma
- If there are clumps floating in the vial or there are white particles stuck to the bottom or side giving the vial a frosted appearance
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