Levemir vs. NovoLog

Reviewed on 1/20/2021

Are Levemir and NovoLog the Same Thing?

Levemir (insulin detemir [rDNA origin] injection) and NovoLog (insulin aspart [rDNA origin] injection) are used to treat diabetes in adults and children.

Levemir is a long-acting human insulin analog and is a rapid-acting form of insulin.

NovoLog is usually given together with another long-acting insulin.

Side effects of Levemir and NovoLog that are similar include low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) and injection site reactions (e.g., pain, redness, irritation).

Side effects of Levemir that are different from NovoLog include swelling of the hands/feet, thickening of the skin where you inject Levemir, weight gain, headache, back pain, stomach pain, flu symptoms, and cold symptoms such as stuffy nose, sneezing, sore throat.

Both Levemir and NovoLog may interact with oral antidiabetic medications, pramlintide acetate, angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, disopyramide, fibrates, fluoxetine, monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors, propoxyphene, pentoxifylline, salicylates, somatostatin analogs, sulfonamide antibiotics, corticosteroids, niacin, danazol, diuretics, sympathomimetic agents (e.g., epinephrine, albuterol, terbutaline), glucagon, isoniazid, phenothiazine derivatives, somatropin, thyroid hormones, estrogens, progestogens (e.g., in oral contraceptives), protease inhibitors, atypical antipsychotic medications (e.g., olanzapine and clozapine), reserpine, guanethidine, beta-blockers, clonidine, lithium salts, alcohol, and pentamidine.

NovoLog may also interact with angiotensin II receptor blocking agents.

What Are Possible Side Effects of Levemir?

Common side effects of Levemir include:

  • injection site reactions (e.g., pain, redness, irritation),
  • swelling of the hands/feet,
  • thickening of the skin where you inject Levemir,
  • weight gain,
  • headache,
  • back pain,
  • stomach pain,
  • flu symptoms, or
  • cold symptoms such as stuffy nose, sneezing, sore throat.

Tell your doctor if you experience serious side effects of Levemir including:

  • signs of low potassium level in the blood (such as muscle cramps, weakness, or irregular heartbeat).

What Are Possible Side Effects of NovoLog?

The most common side effect of NovoLog is low blood sugar (hypoglycemia).

Symptoms of low blood sugar may include:

Other common side effects of NovoLog include:

  • injection site reactions (e.g., pain, redness, irritation).

Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects of NovoLog including:

  • signs of low potassium level in the blood (such as muscle cramps, weakness, or irregular heartbeat).

QUESTION

Diabetes is defined best as... See Answer

What Is Levemir?

Levemir (insulin detemir [rDNA origin] injection) is a man-made form of a hormone that is produced in the body used to treat diabetes in adults and children.

What Is NovoLog?

NovoLog (insulin aspart [rDNA origin] injection) is a form of insulin, a hormone that is produced in the body, used to treat type 1 (insulin-dependent) diabetes in adults and children who are at least 2 years old. NovoLog is usually given together with another long-acting insulin.

What Drugs Interact With Levemir?

Levemir may interact with albuterol, clonidine, reserpine, guanethidine, or beta-blockers. Other medicines can increase or decrease the effects of insulin Levemir on lowering your blood sugar. Tell your doctor all prescription and over-the-counter medications you use.

What Drugs Interact With NovoLog?

There are many other medicines that can increase or decrease the effects of insulin.

Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes:

  • vitamins,
  • minerals,
  • herbal products, and
  • drugs prescribed by other doctors

How Should Levemir be Taken?

Levemir is for once- or twice-daily subcutaneous (under the skin) administration. Patients treated with Levemir once-daily should administer the dose with the evening meal or at bedtime. Patients requiring twice-daily dosing can administer the evening dose with the evening meal, at bedtime, or 12 hours after the morning dose.

How Should NovoLog be Taken?

Read the Instructions for Use that come with your NovoLog.

Take NovoLog exactly as your healthcare provider tells you to.

NovoLog starts acting fast. You should eat a meal within 5 to 10 minutes after you take your dose of NovoLog.

Know the type and strength of insulin you take. Do not change the type of insulin you take unless your healthcare provider tells you to. The amount of insulin and the best time for you to take your insulin may need to change if you take different types of insulin.

Check your blood sugar levels. Ask your healthcare provider what your blood sugars should be and when you should check your blood sugar levels.

Do not reuse or share your needles with other people. You may give other people a serious infection or get a serious infection from them.

SLIDESHOW

Diabetes: What Raises and Lowers Your Blood Sugar Level? See Slideshow
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References
Levemir Prescribing Information.

http://www.novo-pi.com/levemir.pdf

NovoLog Prescribing Information.

http://www.novo-pi.com/novolog.pdf

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