Lantus SoloStar Pens
What are Lantus SoloStar Pens?
Lantus Solostar is a long-acting insulin injection prescribed to improve blood sugar levels in patients with diabetes. Lantus Solostar will start working within 4 hours of the injection lasting up to 24 hours.
Lantus Solostar belongs to the drug class, insulin. Insulin medications work by mimicking human insulin, which helps control blood sugar levels. When insulin made by the body decreases, blood sugar levels will rise to high levels. Very high blood sugar levels can be dangerous and life-threatening.
What are the Indications for Lantus Solostar?
Lantus Solostar is prescribed as part of a treatment plan to manage blood sugar levels consisting of exercise, diet changes, and regular blood sugar testing. Any change in diet and activity can affect blood sugar levels.
This medication is prescribed to treat type 1 diabetes in adult patients and pediatric patients who are 6 years or older; and also prescribed to treat type 2 diabetes patients 18 years or older.
Lantus Solostar is not recommended:
- For treatment of diabetic ketoacidosis.
- If you are allergic or have had an allergic reaction to Lantus or ingredients in Lantus.
How is Lantus Solostar used?
Lantus Solostar is a disposable injectable pan that is to be injected under your skin. You should not share this medication with another person even if you’ve replaced the needle. Sharing may result in a serious infection for yourself or the other person transmitted through the needle.
Lantus Solostar that has not been opened may be stored at room temperature below 86°F (30°C) for up to 28 days or in the refrigerator between 36° to 46°F (2° to 8°C) indefinitely.
Lantus Solostar should be kept away from direct light and heat. Lantus Solostar should not be stored in the freezer.
If opened and currently in use can be stored at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 28 days. After 28 days, any opened remaining medication must be thrown away even if there is still some medication left.
Follow the patient information pamphlet that comes with your medication. Patients with vision problems should use Lantus Solostar with the assistance of someone who is trained to use this medication.
Lantus Solostar needs to be injected under the skin of your upper leg, stomach, or upper arm. Lantus Solostar should never be injected into a vein or muscle.
- Select your injection site and clean with an alcohol swab. The injection site should be rotated so as not to be in the exact same location as the last injection.
- Do not inject in areas with scars, stretch marks, bruises, or where the skin is tender, hard, or red.
- Inject the medication exactly as directed in the patient information pamphlet to ensure you are using the correct dose.
- After the injection, dispose of the needle in an FDA-cleared sharps disposal container immediately. Do not reuse or share your needles with other people. You can create a sharps disposable container by using any heavy-duty plastic household container that you have that:
- Is leak-resistant
- Has a tight-fitting, puncture-proof lid so sharps such as needles cannot escape
- Has a label warning there are hazardous materials inside the container
Lantus Solostar is a clear, colorless solution available as a 3 mL (300 units) single-patient-use prefilled pen.
Lantus Solostar should be administered once daily as directed by your doctor. Dosages may vary and can change depending on several factors; including weight, current blood sugar level, activity levels, and how well your body responds to insulin.
If you have:
- Type 1 diabetes, the starting dose will be one-third of your required daily insulin need in combination with short-acting insulins.
- Type 2 diabetes, the starting dose is 0.2 units/kg or up to 10 units daily.
Switching from other insulin
If you are switching from:
- Once-daily NPH insulin to Lantus Solostar, you may be able to continue taking the same unit dose.
- Twice-daily NPH insulin to Lantus Solostar, your doctor may lower your dose to 80% of what your dose was for NPH insulin.
- Once-daily Toujeo to Lantus Solostar, your doctor may lower your dose to 80% of what your dose was for Toujeo.
- Other therapy, the dosage will depend on other short-acting medications and therapies in use.
It’s important to understand that although Lantus Solostar is FDA approved, it comes with side effects that may or may not affect you.
Before starting Lantus Solostar, you should discuss possible side effects with your doctor or pharmacist.
Common Side Effects
Not all side effects require medical attention. As your body adjusts to Lantus Solostar, side effects may go away.
Tell your doctor if you experience the following symptoms, and they become severe or do not go away on their own:
- Low blood sugar
- Reaction at the injection site (e.g. tenderness, redness, skin thickening)
- Weight gain
Serious Side Effects
Severe adverse reactions while taking Lantus Solostar can occur. Seek emergency medical care or call 911 if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- Severe allergic reaction: severe rash or itching, swelling in the face, lips, tongue, or throat, rapid heartbeat, fainting or dizziness, or problems breathing or swallowing.
- Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia): headache, irritability, confusion, blurred vision, slurred speech, dizziness or light-headedness, shakiness, fast heartbeat, mood change, anxiety, or excessive hunger.
- Low potassium (hypokalemia): constipation, fluttering in the chest or irregular heartbeats, leg cramps, increased thirst or need to urinate, muscle weakness or unusual tiredness, or tingling sensation.
- Heart failure: weight gain, shortness of breath even at rest, swelling of the legs and/or stomach, increased tiredness and weakness, nausea, abdominal pain, or persistent cough with blood-tinged mucous.
The information above does not list all possible side effects. Contact your doctor or pharmacist if you experience any side effects not listed. You or your doctor may report side effects to the FDA by calling 1-800-FDA-1088.
Warnings & Precautions
Before using Lantus Solostar, tell your doctor or pharmacist:
- If you are allergic to any medications such as Lantus Solostar
- If you have or have had low levels of potassium such as hypokalemia
- If you have or have had heart failure
- If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant
- If you are breastfeeding
Heart Failure and Fluid Retention
Taking insulin such as Lantus Solostar with thiazolidinediones (TZDs) can result in fluid retention leading to heart failure. Your doctor will monitor your symptoms and adjust your medications as needed.
Hypoglycemia or Low Blood Sugar
The risks of having low blood sugar levels increase:
- If there is a change in your diet and exercise
- If you consume alcohol
- If you take medications for diabetes such as Lantus Solostar
- If you are over 65 years of age
- If you have liver or kidney problems
Symptoms include the inability to concentrate, irritability, shakiness, fast heartbeat, unusual weakness or tiredness, excessive hunger, and confusion.
Severe low blood sugar may become life-threatening, cause seizures, or result in death. Your doctor will create a treatment plan that includes monitoring your blood sugar level to determine if a change in treatment is necessary.
Taking Lantus Solostar can result in low potassium levels, especially if you are taking another medication that may also lower potassium levels. Low potassium levels can be dangerous, resulting in ventricular arrhythmia, respiratory paralysis, or death. Your doctor may monitor your potassium levels to determine if a change in treatment is necessary.
To avoid mixing up long-acting and short-acting insulins, carefully review labels to ensure you use the correct insulin before making an injection. Using the wrong insulin and/or dose may lead to overdose and severe high blood pressure. There have been reports of accidental insulin mix-ups of patients using different insulins in the incorrect amount.
Pregnant or Plan to Become Pregnant
Having high blood sugar during pregnancy may cause complications during the pregnancy and delivery for both mother and baby. Complications include premature birth, low birth weight, and breathing problems. There is also an increased risk of miscarriage or stillborn. Your doctor will create a treatment plan to monitor your blood sugar levels.
Sharing of Needles, Pens, and Vials
Needles, pens, and vials should never be reused or shared with anyone else. Doing so creates risks of dangerous diseases spread through blood transmission.
Interactions & Contraindications
Before using Lantus Solostar, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you take any medications, herbal supplements, or vitamins.
Increased Risk of Low Blood Sugar
Taking Lantus Solostar with the following types of medications may increase your risk of low blood sugar. Your doctor will monitor your treatment plan and make changes as necessary.
Effectiveness of Blood Sugar Lowering Ability
Taking Lantus Solostar with the following types of medications may decrease the effectiveness of Lantus Solostar to lower blood sugar levels. Your doctor will monitor your treatment plan and make changes as necessary.
- Corticosteroids (e.g., betamethasone, prednisone, and prednisolone).
- Estrogens (e.g. Estradiol and Imvexxy)
- Oral contraceptives
Frequently Asked Questions