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A new study has found that inhaled insulin before each meal plus insulin glargine before bedtime can be just as effective for patients with type 2 diabetes as conventional premixed biaspart insulin therapy.
The study, carried out at the Dallas Diabetes and Endocrine Center in the US, showed that the treatment can also lead to less weight gain and less hypoglycaemia.
The results of the study, lead by Dr Julio Rosenstock, are published in the Lancet medical journal.
Inhaled insulin is an ultra-rapid treatment whereby the patient receives the drug through a small palm size inhaler. Insulin glargine is used widely by type 2 diabetes patients and is taken twice a day. The effects usually last around 24 hours.
Biaspart insulin is a treatment that contains short-acting insulin (30%) and intermediate-acting NPH insulin (70%).
Insulin therapy is often a delayed strategy in patients with type 2 diabetes because it is associated with weight gain, hypoglycaemia (abnormally low blood sugar) and the need for injections.
Inhaled insulin may have the potential to overcome those barriers and facilitate initiation and optimisation of insulin treatment.
Copyright Press Association 2010