1. Get the Diabetes Forum App for your phone - available on iOS and Android.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Guest, we'd love to know what you think about the forum! Take the Diabetes Forum Survey 2021 »
    Dismiss Notice
  3. Diabetes Forum should not be used in an emergency and does not replace your healthcare professional relationship. Posts can be seen by the public.
    Dismiss Notice
  4. Guest, stay home, stay safe, save the NHS. Stay up to date with information about keeping yourself and people around you safe here and GOV.UK: Coronavirus (COVID-19). Think you have symptoms? NHS 111 service is available here.
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Find support, ask questions and share your experiences. Join the community »

Hi can anyone help me regarding animal insulin?

Discussion in 'Diabetes Discussions' started by Rach79, Jun 8, 2009.

  1. Rach79

    Rach79 · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    285
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Hi,

    I'm wondering if anyone can tell me about Porcine Isophane and Porcine Neutral.

    My diabetic clinic provided this for me last week but despite having numb toes lack of sleep due to night hypos etc. the doctor gave the usual 'your fine go away' attitude. I had to spell out I wasn't fine and spell out again that I did not wish complications to be a part of my life and I had the right to live a normal life like everybody else. He asked what I wanted to do about it and I asked (for the third time) for animal insulin. I received it this time, however the clinic had NO INFORMATION WHATSOEVER on the insulin and were very negative saying, ah well you could have less symptoms of hypos or more who knows as nobody really uses this insulin and oh yeah you'll take a few days to get the insulin from the chemist. I asked about leaflets etc. and they had none. The doctor then scribbled a prescription out and off I went.

    It turns out I got my insulin the next morning but I was frightened to try it for a few days due to the diabetic clinic's attitude and the fact it was a big change. I didn't know what my insulin would do, if I would feel my hypos etc. etc. Anyhow my mum persuaded me to try it saying there is no time like the present and eventually I braved this on Saturday night. I had taken 10 units this night. On Sunday morning at 6am I had a hypo but it wasn't too bad, but then my blood sugars were very high and Sunday night I took about 10 units night insulin instead of 19 units of synthetic like I used to. At 2am this morning I woke up feeling awful and very very weak and sick. I just about managed to test my blood sugars which were 1.7mmol. I was very upset, alone and worried they would become worse. Of course straight away I took some lucozade which was next to my bed as always and luckily my sugars started to rise. Today I took my breakfast insulin and had some toast about 30 to 40 mins after. At about 11:30 they were 9.1mmol. I then took my lunch insulin just after and over an hour later they are now over 17 mmol.

    Does anyone have any ideas re timing before lunch, how long this insulin lasts if the night insulin peaks etc. Any help to stop me feeling like **** and almost dying again in the night would help immensely thanks.

    PS I decided to take night insulin (isophane this morning as I recently found out it is about 12hours and to prevent night hypos but apart from this I am lost).

    Rachael
     
  2. suzi

    suzi · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    754
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Hi Rach,
    seems like ages since ive been on, but have been following your fight for animal insulin, congratulations for getting it, though your practice needs more than a swift kick up the jacksee for not providing you with adequate imformation and advice on its dosage and use. If you can remember i once told you of my T1 aunt in england who has been on animal insulin for 38yr+. All i can remember is she takes it twice aday, has frequent snacks and uses enough of the stuff to keep and elephant going! 70units in morning and 20 something teatime, everyones different love and you really need to either search the web or get intouch with some decent diabetic nurses, i know thats going to be hard on the isle of man, but you can but try, good luck and keep us posted. i would phone me auntie but shes on hols and isnt back for another 3wks, lucky so and so,
    Take care,
    Suzi x
     
  3. phoenix

    phoenix Type 1 · Expert

    Messages:
    5,672
    Likes Received:
    3,674
    Trophy Points:
    178
  4. kegstore

    kegstore · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    771
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Rachael, well done for keeping at them! Sorry you're having problems.

    I looked into changing to animal as well, and found that the "evidence" of regaining hypo awareness was anecdotal only. So while this clearly works for some people it's not been "proven", like so many other things... No research has actually been carried out and unfortunately there's no financial reason to do so, as GM insulin is cheaper to produce. None of which helps you.:(

    I noticed you moved from NovoRapid which is a really fast-acting insulin. I'm on the same and can actually maintain a flat bg level throughout and after a meal just by dosing as I am eating. Porcine will both behave differently and with a much slower reaction time but you seem to know this already.

    The only other thing I can think of is that it will definitely take your body more than just a few days to adjust to the new regime, so you'll need to persevere. It might be an idea to try to stabilise your blood glucose at a higher level than you normally might like, then once this is achieved gradually increase your insulin doses to bring the whole picture back within acceptable levels? The few days of increased blood glucose levels that this might entail would be a worthwhile investment in getting your levels down long-term, and shouldn't make any difference to the onset of complications which take years to develop.
     
  5. Rach79

    Rach79 · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    285
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    38

    OMG looked at the link and the diabetic clinic said.... "oh it may last about 12 hours or something like that.. but we're not sure". I asked if it peaked at any time and DSN said "basically nobody really uses this so we are not sure I don't think it does but you will get some information in the packet anyway". The DSN nurse spotted a mistake on the prescription the doctor gave me so he just scribbled this out and wrote above it. They then told me there was no leaflets and I left. Boots actually said the prescription wasn't written very well and doesn't fill you with confidence and I said "no comment".

    Thank you everyone for your advice I might do a bit better now I have clear, correct and concise information. The clinic are only putting my life in their hands but what the hell as long as they're tea break is on time... huh? Also the doctor said I was fine again... bit tired of hearing that to!!!
     
  6. annettemc

    annettemc · Newbie

    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    21
    Basically it is true that most GP's and Diabetic consultants are trying to steer patients away from the animal insulin as it is apparently not as pure or predictable as the manufactured varieties?? I do strongly believe if you are adamant about remaining on animal insulin you should stand your ground with them, and demand it! Everyone is very different with their insulin requirements and whatever is suiting you best is the best insulin for you. Myself and 3 other siblings are all insulin dependant diabetics for a number of years and we are all on different insulins. What suits 1 person is not necessarily the same choice for you. My advice would be...go with what insulin is causing you the least amount of problems whether it is animal insulin or not and discuss it properly with your consultant. If you have a good reason for staying on what feels safest for you... they are hardly going to say no....especially if it is a matter of life or death. My sister has managed to stay on the pork insulin (but not in novopen form) so if you are having major problems with Hypos etc reasoning with the G.P. or your Diabetic Consultant is the best way forward. Good luck!
     
  7. Trinkwasser

    Trinkwasser · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,468
    Likes Received:
    12
    Trophy Points:
    58
    These guys might help

    http://www.iddtinternational.org/

    Over the years I've met a few people who have successfully made the change but none of them post here. They were all obstructed at first but no-one had the gall to refuse them information when they were finally prescribed the pork or beef.

    Try PM ing Janabelle (?)
     
  8. Rach79

    Rach79 · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    285
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Hi well my bs are running a bit higher than normal but I can live with that for a few days. I am going to up my Isophane tomorrow morning from 10 to 12 and if that is still too low then 12 to 14 but see how I go.

    I can honestly say (and I'm not imagining this), I feel better on animal already! I wake up and instead of needing about 4 cups of coffee to wake up I only need one now and it's not straight away. I feel I can concentrate a lot better and remember things easier and I don't have that lethargic 'I want to go to bed' feeling mid afternoon any more. It could be just a phase but who knows, maybe the animal insulin has helped me feel better but it's really quite early to tell right now. My mum said she thought I looked brighter and seemed more alert than what I did on synthetic. Also since taking the Isophane in the morning, my night hypos have stopped. I tried this with synthetic Lantus insulin before (taking in morning) but my bs were all over the place and too high during evenign and night times. At the moment this insulin seems quite stable and I can get my evening sugars quite good. So despite the awful hypo from hell I am actually doing ok at the moment and feel this could be a very good thing for me. However only time can tell I guess and it is a case of trial and error before getting everything spot on.
     
  9. Rach79

    Rach79 · Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    285
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Hi Twinkwasser, thank you for the IDDT link. Another user passed this on a while ago and it is this that made me make the decision to go on animal insulin. The site describes the allergies to GM insulin and I feel I fit the bill with 9 out of the 11 or 12 allergic symptoms there.

    Rach
     
  10. Domenico

    Domenico · Newbie

    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    21
    hi, im very interseted in changing to animal insulins, im on exactly the same u where, novorapid & lantus & im feeling alot of side effects.
    I was curious in what form dus the animal insulin come, eg, pens with the novofine needles etc ??
    cheers
    dom :)
     
  11. devboy

    devboy · Newbie

    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    21
    :O Rach!

    I'm in the Isle of Man too!! lol how weird,

    Tbh I have always found the diabetic clinch quite helpfull, but I have never needed anything else than NovoRapid and Glargine...

    I hope you get it sorted :)
     
  12. cugila

    cugila · Master

    Messages:
    10,272
    Likes Received:
    98
    Trophy Points:
    118
    Hi Domenico.

    Here is a link to information about Animal Insulin and under 'availability' lists what delivery methods are available.

    http://www.iddtinternational.org/gmvsan ... /index.htm

    Hope that helps ?

    Ken.
     
  • Meet the Community

    Find support, connect with others, ask questions and share your experiences with people with diabetes, their carers and family.

    Did you know: 7 out of 10 people improve their understanding of diabetes within 6 months of being a Diabetes Forum member. Get the Diabetes Forum App and stay connected on iOS and Android

    Grab the app!
  • Tweet with us

  • Like us on Facebook