New to Novolin N and need some advice

So, I was laid off in January and lost my health insurance. Long story short, I’ve been taking Lantus with Novolog and unfortunately ran out of Lantus. I tried to order some from Canada but for some reason that didn’t work out and I needed to replace my long lasting insulin. I’ve read up on some Novolin N curves and it peaks around 4 to 8 hours. I’m currently weighing in at 130 lbs. and I usually eat about 2.5-3 meals a day at the same time. Does anyone have any advice on how many units of Novolin N I should start with? I was taking 15 units in the morning of Lantus and 16 units of Lantus at night. Any info would be a great help. I would call my doctor but they’re not helping me since I don’t have insurance. Thanks ahead of time.

Hi Chuck,

I’m not a T1, so they say, I’m T2. I personally think I’m T1.5, but can’t afford the tests to check my insulin levels, it’s difficult enough to get the “regular” lab bills paid off! No insurance! So I know where you’re coming from, there! I also take Novolin N. I don’t know if the amounts for Lantus and N are the same or similar, or not, since I’ve never taken Lantus. I started out taking 15u AM & PM of Novolin N. I’m now up to 25u AM & PM. You might want to start out taking what you were taking with the Lantus. BUT watch VERY carefully to see how you do with it. Also, I’m sure you know, but just incase you don’t … you can use Novolin R to replace the Novolog if/when you run out. Since Novolog is also a prescription item, and the R is not. R does not work as fast as Novolog, and it stays in your system longer. But, it’s an alternative that is MUCH cheaper. OH BTW, you can get ReliON insulins at Walmart or Sam’s (if you have a Sam’s card) for about 1/2 the cost of the Novolin brand. They are actually the SAME. Walmart and Novolin went “in” together and created a “co-branded” version. EXACTLY the same! Even says Novolin on the box and vial, but has a small ReliOn label as well. Just remember to ask SPECIFICALLY for ReliOn. I just paid $23.67 at Sam’s today, for a vial of N.

Hope this helps!

i get free lantus through sanofi aventis with their prescription assistance program. (and humalog through Lilly cares). Go to to fill out application. Sadly i don’t know to much about the other insulins out there.

I used N for a long time. It has an awful peak about 3-5 hours (unpredictable) after you take it that will cause you to go low and HAVE to eat. I took N so the peak lined up with lunchtime, back in the days when you didn’t bolus for lunch. BTW your bolus insulin dose will have to change for lunch.

IMO - try to get your hands on lantus… it’s a better basal insulin.

for day dosing you should start out with 75% of your lantus shot and test more often than usual. If you take 16 units of N at night it could peak at 2, and if you don’t wake up from the hypo you might not wake up at all. For night time cut the dose by at least 50% and get up at 2, 3 and 4 to test. Over a few weeks you’ll figure it out. You’ll probably run high while you are tuning but it’s better than a ride to the hospital.

Hi Chuck,
This post here shares a great patient assistance resource.

Hope it helps, man.