Long-Acting Insulin Analogs Versus Insulin Pump Therapy for the Treatment of Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes
- 1Metabolic Unit, King's College London School of Medicine, Guy's Hospital, London, U.K
- 2Endocrinology Department, Lapeyronie Hospital, Montpellier, France
- Address correspondence and reprint requests to Prof. John Pickup, Metabolic Unit, King's College London School of Medicine, Guy's Hospital, London SE1 9RT, U.K. E-mail:
Insulin pump therapy (continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion [CSII]) is now an established form of intensive insulin treatment. It is pertinent to ask, however, if multiple daily injection (MDI) regimens based on new long-acting insulin analogs such as glargine and detemir have now replaced the need for CSII. In type 1 diabetes, CSII reduces the frequency of severe hypoglycemia compared with isophane-based MDIs, but the rate of severe hypoglycemia is usually similar on glargine- or detemir-based MDIs compared with isophane-based MDIs. CSII reduces A1C and glycemic variability compared with isophane-based MDIs; but glargine and detemir do not improve A1C or variability in many patients, particularly those who are prone to hypoglycemia. Head-to-head comparisons of CSII with MDI based on glargine indicate lower A1C, fructosamine, or glucose levels on CSII. It can be concluded that long-acting insulin analogs have not yet replaced the need for insulin pump therapy in type 1 diabetes, and CSII is the best current therapeutic option for some type 1 diabetic subjects. In type 2 diabetes, CSII and MDI produce similar glycemic control, although there is little study of MDI based on long-acting analogs compared with pumps. It is possible that CSII will be beneficial in selected patient groups with type 2 diabetes, but this requires further study.
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