Novolog vs humalog

My insurance prompted a switch to humalog from novolog. I can switch back to novolog pretty easily but it will cost me a bit more (cost is not a huge concern for me) but I guess I might as well give it a try. Novolog is the only rapid I’ve ever used (except afrezza)

Im on mdi with basal and bolus and also use afrezza. I’m wondering what to expect with humalog instead of novolog? Seamless transition? Steep new learning curve? Somewhere in between?

Would love to hear from folks who’ve used both.

no real difference for me

Absolutely ZERO difference here. I use them interchangeably–I’ve even filled a reservoir with both at the same time, because I wanted to “top off” a reservoir and was switching to the other insulin at the same time. However you bolus with Humalog will be the same with Novolog. Same with basals. 6 to 1; 1/2 a dozen of the other.

What I found is novolog is a bit stronger. In my pump the basal is lower with novolog. the timing is pretty much the same though. I found that out when I switched.

My insurance also prompted a switch to Humalog from Apidra. I’ve used Humalog before but it’s been a long time. I’m irritated that the bean counters instigated this but I’ll keep an open mind that I will find little difference.

While I know that some people claim dramatic differences between the three rapid acting analogs, I remain skeptical about that in the general sense. Of course, individuals might see differences.

For me, I do know that I get raised red “pump bumps” with Novolog, so that’s a switch that I would push back against. The allergic reaction also impaired insulin absorption.

Good luck with the switch, Sam. I hope you will report your experience here.

For me, the only difference in action that I notice is that Apidra trails off faster, Novolog takes a bit longer and Humalog takes the longest - so I’d have to watch out for stacking more. That said, my insurance also wanted me to switch from either Apidra or Novolog to Humalog – HOWEVER, I get a bad skin reaction to Humalog which I do not get from either of the other two. My doctor got the insurance to back off by calling my reaction an allergy. - so I’m on Apidra for now without interference from the bean counters.

I find no difference other than what the insurance decides on what they’ll pay for


No difference for me…I would use the one that cost me less…
I use Humalog now but also used Novolog for many years. I can switch between them without any changes to my pump. My insurance (EcspressScripts) dropped Novolog and Apidra from their
covered drug list a few years ago along with 40 other drugs and test strips.

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Effing bean counters! We docs hate them like the plague of healthcare death that they are…:japanese_goblin:

My DD has used Humalog, Novolog (briefly), and is now using Apidra. Only difference I’ve noted is that Apidra’s onset of action seems to be a bit quicker, which is a major plus for a 13 year-old who wants to eat RIGHT NOW after pre-bolusing.

(Damn to hell bolus-to-blouse autocorrect; I swear it will suck 3 years off my life after all is said and done!)

So do we patients!

In January 2014, my PBM, CareMark (an abbreviation of “We are the Mark of CareLess”), suggested I change from Humalog to Apidra because of lower cost. Thus really meant that CareMark was negotiating hard with Lily to reduce the cost of Humalog. At the time, I had a good supply of Humalog, so I held off until July. By that time, the tables had somehow turned, and Apidra was twice the cost of Humalog, so I re-ordered the Humalog.

In January of 2015, CareMark was again negotiating with Lilly, or they had just made a great deal with Novo, because I was informed that by April, 2015, I could only order NovoLog on their formulary list. OY!

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m all for a good deal, but these guys seemingly are ONLY focused on the “good deal” for CareMark, and Care Less about the downstream/side effects.

My Caremark plan has always (as long as I’ve cared anyway) only covered novolog. I also have an express scripts plan, which is actually better coverage (fixed $25 max copay vs my caremarks 30% copay). So it ends up being considerably cheaper for me to use the express scripts coverage— which only wants to cover humalog.

I think the plan is to ditch my secondary coverage (which is my kids and wife’s primary, and the express scripts plan) altogether and make my coverage with Caremark the primary for the whole family…

Having two plans is very expensive-- the second plan is currently costing almost $800/ month out-of-pocket. And it is inferior insurance (other than the prescription plan, which is better)… But because of the “birthday rule” this inferior insurance ends up being primary for 3/4 of the family. And coordinating benefits between the two coverages is always a total mess.

Long story short we’ve decided that dual coverage just isn’t worth it, and as soon as we ditch it I’ll probably be back on novolog with a slightly higher copay— though I’ll be able to afford that higher copay more easily.

For me there is a difference. Novolog kicks in faster and lasts a bit shorter than Humalog. I started on Humalog, tried Novolog for about a year and then got back to Humalog because Novolog got me hanging too high (BS wise) too long for my liking. Humalog lasts 4.5 hours, Novolog only 4 hours. But the important point for me was that Humalog gives me a nicer spike than Novolog.

i have been using Humalog and Protophane in a 5/6 injections a day since it come out in the mid 90’s (Time flies when your having fun) using Pens and it is miles better than the old Act rapid insulin zinc combo with 26 gauge 1 1/4 " needles Anybody remember the good old days pre meters (my first in 88) ?. The only problem with humalog is the Crap plastic pens! as 4 4 or 4.5 hours id beats the 6 hours and have to inject 30 minutes be4 a meal, try planing around that…

@keith7: You know you can get a reusable insulin pen for your Humalog? They are solid. I´ve used them myself.

First impression is that I absolutely hate that the humalog pen doesn’t click when injecting wheras the novolog pen does… I had become so used to counting the clicks as I inject as a way of double checking.

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first meal with humalog was not a great success… Went from 82 to 170 in about an hour and had to do a correction with afrezza. Suppose the same thing could have happened with novolog, it was nowhere near the perfect experiment, but not exactly confidence inspiring for me…

Lol tested after lunch today (same thing I eat for lunch on a regular basis) and it was 200. I was just about to call my doctor office and tell them I want novolog back because this isn’t working when I decided to wash my hands and test again… Was actually 106.

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Second meal with humalog-- also a mess I had to clean up with afrezza. If this trend continues I’ll switch back to novolog on Monday.

My pharmacy benefits manager contacted my doctor’s office to encourage them to prescribe Humalog instead of Apidra. My Apidra insulin order was overdue from them so when my doctor’s office called me to tell me about this change request, I said OK.

The next day I was surprised at the post office with my 90-day supply of Apidra. So I called Express Scripts and asked them what was going on. I asked them if I could continue to get Apidra. They said I could if my doctor specified “no substitutions allowed” and that Apidra was “medically necessary” for me.

Not sure what your plan says but I think its outrageous that the insurance companies can insert themselves between a doctor, his patient, and the patient’s health. What we do to treat our diabetes is incredibly complex. It makes no sense to add extra man-made burdens to satisfy an insurance company’s bottom line.

I used Humalog many years ago. It was the first rapid acting analog insulin available in 1996. It was way better than Regular. I ultimately switched to Novolog, then Apidra. Some people say they’re all the same but you should trust your instincts and judgment. Good luck with fine tuning your Humalog or getting a switch back to Novolog.

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I have two prescription plans… Just as it happens the one with the lower copay covers humalog and the one with the higher copay covers novolog… Net effect is novolog will cost me $75 / box out of pocket instead of $25 for humalog.

As of the first of the year we are canceling the policy that has the “better” rx coverage anyway, so it really doesn’t make a great deal of difference in the grand scheme— I’m just still hoping to see that I can actually use them interchangeably with the same results-- so far that hasn’t been demonstrated but I will keep an open mind a little bit longer.