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Insulin detemir



Insulin detemir is used in the treatment of type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes.

How it works

Insulin detemir replaces the insulin that the body would normally make. Insulin is critical for promoting the use and storage of all the major nutrients : glucose, fats and proteins.

Common side effects

Application site redness of skin, Application site irritation, Fat accumulation, Sensory disturbance, Skin rash, Skin redness, Vision changes, Weight gain, Redness of skin


Expert advice

  • Tell your doctor if you have a history of heart problems (e.g, heart failure), kidney or liver problems, nerve problems adrenal, pituitary, or thyroid problems; or diabetic ketoacidosis (a life-threatening condition that develops when cells in the body are unable to get the sugar  they need for energy because there is not enough insulin).
  • Ensure that you do not take too much insulin, skip a meal, or exercise too much as this may lead to hypoglycemia (low blood sugar levels with symptoms such as shakiness, nervousness or anxiety, sweating, chills and clamminess, irritability, confusion, nausea etc).
  • Exercise caution to prevent from developing a fever or infection, do not eat more than prescribed, or miss your dose of insulin as this may cause hyperglycemia (high blood sugar levels with symptoms such as confusion, drowsiness, or feeling thirsty, flushing etc).
  • You will be regularly monitored for blood glucose levels or hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) while taking insulin detemir.
  • Tell your doctor or dentist that you take insulin detemir cartridges before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care or surgery.
  • Inform your doctor if you use 3 or more insulin injections per day.
  • Do not drive or use any machinery after taking insulin detemir as it may cause dizziness, light-headedness, or blurred vision.
  • Do not consume alcohol when on treatment with insulin detemir, as it may worsen its side effects.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant or are breastfeeding.
  • Do not take if allergic to insulin detemir or any of its ingredients.
  • Do not take if suffering from episodes of low blood sugar levels (hypoglycemia).

Content on this page was last updated on 24 November, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)