Need Help

Submit your question to our team of health care professionals.

Current Question

See what's on the mind of the community right now.

Meet the Team

Learn more about our world-renowned team.

CWD Answers Archives

Review the entire archive according to the date it was posted.

November 9, 1999

Insulin Analogs

Question from a nurse in New York, USA:

I am a nurse in a local school district and am dealing with two 5�year old diabetics. This is my eleventh year in this nursing role and my first time with a diabetic in school. I have doctor’s orders to give insulin after lunch with one of these children. The type of insulin used is Humalog. I am familiar with many aspects of diabetes, but not with the practice of giving insulin after a meal. Could you possibly give me some information on the benefits and rationale of this practice?


From: DTeam Staff

Humalog is what is called a “substituted insulin” which means that the positions of two amino acids, lysine and proline, have been changed around. The effect of this is to produce an insulin that starts to act in ten minutes and is effective for four hours only. This means that you can give the insulin after measuring blood glucose just before the meal and after assessing appetite for the meal. Humalog insulin given 10 to 15 minutes after starting to eat will still effectively cover the peak postprandial rise in blood sugar. It is easy to understand how this can make for better control.