Novolog vs. Humalog

Hello Everyone,

My insurance is no longer paying for novolog in January, I read someone else's post about that recently. I have tons of novolog so I won't be switching any time soon, but I am going to get a free sample of humalog and I will switch my rx right away.

I'm just wondering what the difference is and if there are cartridges to fit my novolog pen junior? Or does humalog have a similar pen? Is humalog shorter acting and more rapid? I can't remember what I read about it now.

I wonder if there will ever be a day in this country where are health and the drugs we choose won't be dictated by how much money the insurance and drug companies make?

They work pretty much the same for me. The data suggests that humalog has a tiny bit faster action. I don’t notice a difference.
Of course the pen cartridges don’t fit each other pens. That is by design of course.
The reality though is that it’s best to have different brands. That actually keeps costs down a little. My insurance switched the other way last year.
They have bids. The lowest bidder wins the insulin contract and they last a few years.
That’s why we sometimes have to change back and forth.

I'm among the minority of people who feel different about Humalog and Novolog. I feel a lot better with Novolog and it works better for me, not sure how it does honestly though if it's speed or what the heck but it works better for me. I had headaches while on humalog that went away with novolog , but this might not happen to you. I also do not like the humalog kwik pen. It might be better in a reusable pen, but the kwick pen was really low quality (mine was falling apart by the time I had to throw it away anyway and the lid was all dented and crap) and usually would be hard to push the dose on (also didn't click, which I like as it reassures me the dose went in) . My novolog flex pens don't have these problems at all and neither do my Lantus solostars. This is all a your mileage may vary thing though, Novolog vs humalog seems very coke vs pepsi.

I see no difference with Humalog or Novolog. I have used both for long periods of time.I get them in disposable pens but I use them in my pump. I switched from one to the other without any problems.

I'm also being forced to switch insulins in 2014, from Apidra to Humalog. While browsing the Humalog website, I noticed that Lilly is offering a free HumaPen Luxura HD pen. I have no experience with pens but this looks like an upgrade from their KwikPen basic model.

I intend to get a sample of Humalog before my supply of Apidra runs out and see If I can make the switch OK. If not, then I'll make an appeal to the powers-that-be.

If I ever went on MDI, I would use a pen. It looks so much easier than the vial and syringe combo that I used way back when. Isn't there a pen accessory device that electronically remembers the last dose delivered?

Back in my "sliding scale" days I used Humalog and Lantus. Once I learned the difference between basal and bolus insulin I soon found that for me lantus has a distinct peak and levemir doesn't. Humalog hangs around 5 hours causing some late lows and novolog is good for no more than 3. So far my insurance company covers all types of insulin but only 1 type of blood glucose monitoring strip if not integral to a pump, so who knows what they will limit or cover in the future. I think though if you find Humalog doesn't work well for you then your endo can write you an exclusion letter basically stating that your health is in jeopardy using anything but novolog.

Thanks everyone,

I will reply back later more. I wonder if I can request to have it overridden right away? I'm worried humalog wouldn't be good for me since I have a lot of lows and it will stay in my system for 5 hours maybe. It would also make eating more than every five hours difficult too I guess? I will get that sample and try it I guess.

i've noticed no difference at all. the only thing i've heard is that humalog on pump can sometimes clog it and is a bit more sensitive to heat, temperature.

Thanks Chadd! I will look at this

That is good to hear Sarah, I will get the sample and test it out.

My insurance makes it much more cost-effective to use Humalog than Novolog; however, I have had an allergic reaction to something in the Humalog mix, so I cannot switch. They're making my pay a little more and go through mail-order, but I can (and will) continue to use Novolog, despite my insurance. That said, during the short time that I did use Humalog, I found it slower to start and longer-lasting than Novolog for me - neither of which I liked.

Thanks Thas, I'm going to get the free sample this week and see how it works for me. I have to call my endo to tell them hold off on the new rx until I see if I can use it or not. I have tons of novolog so I won't actually be using it after the trial anyway even if it is ok for me. I hope I don't had an allergic reaction too.

Thanks Terry, I will check out that pen.. I have been using novo pen junior which has half doses which I definitely need. I think there is one but I can't remember now which one it is, someone just posted about that too, I think you have to order it from europe and pay for it though- it's not available in the US yet. I hope you get to keep Apidra if you want to.

That is good Mari, I hope that will be the case for me, if not I will ask my endo to write a letter, I definitely don't want more lows.

I had no problem switching from lantus to levemir, that was my choice also.

hmm.. hope I don't get headaches.. I don't like the levemir flex pens, they stick all the time.. at least the ones I have. My novo pen junior is good and has very few problems at all.

Hi Timothy, I hope that will be the case for me too. I don't think it should go that way of course, we should be able to make our own choices as to what insulins and other meds we want to use based on what works best for us first.

thanks Clare, I will test it out and see what happens.. hope it doesn't cause lows

I have found that there is a difference between the two insulins. The humalog appears to peak differently, and causes more hypos. the novolog goes better with the way I need.

Scott, that is what happened to me too, so after trying humalog a few times I went back to novolog.. I had bad hypo and was jumping all over. My endo wrote me a letter and my insurance has now approved novolog for life for me and I hope they stick to that.