Lantus works by making use of a synthetic form of insulin called insulin glargine. This medication mimics natural insulin by working to reduce the amount of sugar in the blood. Patients who use Lantus can maintain healthy levels of blood glucose, which helps to stabilize their blood sugar. Since diabetes often results in serious life-altering conditions such as stroke or kidney disease, patients who use Lantus in conjunction with diet and exercise may be able to avoid these developments. One of the benefits of the synthetic insulin contained in Lantus is that its effects last longer than that of natural insulin. This means that diabetics who take Lantus may enjoy longer lasting relief from high blood sugar levels.
The only active ingredient in Lantus is insulin glargine, but there are several inactive ingredients in the medication as well. These include zinc, glycerin, sodium hydroxide, and water. Many of these ingredients exist in Lantus in miniscule amounts.
Patients who use Lantus as directed may experience many side effects. In some cases, individuals who use Lantus have an allergic reaction to one or more of the ingredients in the medication. Symptoms of such a reaction include widespread skin rash, unusually fast heart rate, difficulty breathing, and excessive perspiration. Additionally, many patients have less serious side effects such as itching or irritation at the site of the injection.
In a few cases, Lantus may cause serious reactions such as hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia, conditions that are marked by unusually low or extremely high blood sugar. Symptoms of low blood sugar include a strong feeling of hunger, feelings of dizziness, loss of consciousness, and severe headache. Patients who experience high blood sugar levels may feel unusually thirsty, begin breathing rapidly, or have to urinate more often than usual.
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