Administrating Insulin and Insulin Analogues

Insulin Glargine (Lantus)

What is Lantus?

Lantus is a long acting insulin which has been synthesized in the laboratory by altering the structure of human insulin. It is a man-made insulin and is therefore not found naturally in the body unlike human insulin. The altered structure gives it special chemical properties which enable it to last for 24 hours. It has no 'peak' to it's action curve and is therefore a true 'basal' insulin.

What preparations are available?

Lantus is available in vials, cartridges for use in OptiPen devices or as disposable pens.

Vials contain 10 ml which contain 1000 units (100 units/ml)

Cartridges contain 3 ml of Glargine which contain 300 units (100 units/ml). these cartridges are available in packs of five.

Prefilled pens (Lantus OptiSet) also contain 300 units (100 units/ml). These pens are sealed disposable devices and are available in packs of five.

How should I store the vials/pens?

  • store vials in the fridge (2 C to 8 C). Do not freeze.
  • Leave the vial in the carton
  • when you start to use a vial or cartridge, leave it out of the fridge but within the outer carton. You may keep the vial in this way fro up to 4 weeks. Make a note of the date when you first use the vial.
  • Do not store your pens which are in use in the fridge
  • Allow the catridge or vial to reach room temperature (about two hours) before use.

Tell me about the pens

Lnatus Optipen ProLantus OptiPen Pro is a pen which takes replaceable cartridges of 300 units (3ml) each.

Lantus OptiSet pens are pre-filled disposable pens. You may dial up doses in increments of 2 units up to a maximum of 40 units as a single dose. The pens do not require shaking or mixing before use.

How often and at what time should I inject?

Lantus is used once daily and usually injected in the evening.

Any precautions?

  • Do not use if the solution is not clear.
  • Lantus was recently launched in the UK and may not as yet be freely available in other countries. take an adequate supply when going on holiday.
  • Do not mix Glargine with other insulins
  • Do not inject Glargine into a vein
  • If you notice your blood sugar control unexpectedly getting worse, use a new vial.


Dr. Nishan Wijenaike, Consultant Physician
2002 West Suffolk Hospitals Diabetes Service
October 2002