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What does it do?

Insulin lispro is a rapid-acting insulin used to treat diabetes.

How should you use it?

Insulin lispro should be injected into the fatty tissue under the skin (subcutaneously). The abdomen (belly) is usually the best place to inject. Change the injection site regularly so that lumpiness under the skin does not develop.

What if you forget a dose?

If you miss a dose of insulin lispro and have already eaten, check your blood sugar. If it is high, follow the instructions for high blood sugar (hyperglycemia). Otherwise, skip the dose and continue as directed. If you are unsure, contact your health professional.

Can you take other medicines?

Tell your pharmacist or doctor about all medicines or treatments that you may be taking, including vitamins, herbal products or recreational drugs.

What side effects might you notice?

Side EffectsRecommended action

Skin rash, itching, swelling, trouble breathing, change in heartbeat, nausea, vomiting

Tell your doctor immediately

Low blood sugars (hypos). symptoms may include: hunger, warmth, sweating, headache, dizziness, drowsiness, tremor, irritability, confusion, changes in behaviour or vision, weakness, tingling around the mouth and tongue

Drink or eat something sweet. Tell your health professional if this is severe or occurs frequently.

Pain, tenderness or redness at injection site

Tell your health professional if troublesome

If you notice any other effects, discuss them with your doctor or pharmacist.

Other information:

  • If you become ill, change your diet or change your exercise routine your insulin needs will also change, discuss this with your health professional.
  • Alcohol may alter your blood sugar and insulin needs. Changes in your sugar testing and insulin treatment are needed if drinking alcohol.
  • Tell your doctor if you have liver, kidney or thyroid problems.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding.
  • Test your blood sugar before meals, 2 hours after meals and at bedtime, or as directed.
  • Insulin cartridges or vials you are using can be kept at room temperature for up to 4 weeks (cartridges) or 6 weeks (vials). After this, take any leftover insulin back to your pharmacy. Keep unopened insulin in the fridge.
  • Wear medical identification (e.g. MedicAlert bracelet) indicating that you have diabetes. Keep extra insulin, needles and something sweet with you at all times.

This leaflet contains important, but not all, information about this medicine.

Prepared by the PILs Committee at Christchurch Hospital, Canterbury District Health Board, New Zealand. September 2017

For more general information about this sheet and its contents, see: What does a My Medicines sheet cover?

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About My Medicines

My Medicines Patient Information Leaflets (PILs) contain important, but not all, information about the medicines they describe.

For more information about the sheets, see: What does a My Medicines sheet cover?

My Medicines is developed by a team at the Canterbury District Health Board. Our team is made up of doctors, pharmacists, and a non-medical person to help us keep to plain language. We also discuss our information with specialist health professionals or groups when needed