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My friend said that her doctor is changing her insulin. She is taking human insulin right now but she will be going on animal insulin.  This doesn't seem right.  Wouldn't human insulin be safer and more like real insulin than an animal?  I told her she needs to see what is going on with the doctor and ask why she would have to change it.  I was wondering if anyone knows about this type of thing.


I am not sure about why her doctor would make a change from one insulin to another other than that she was having a reaction to the former insulin.  "Human insulin" can be misleading as a term.  It is not actual human insulin but man-made insulin, made in a laboratory setting.  Some patients may not like the fact of having insulin from an animal injected into their bodies so this is an alternative.  I imagine some insulin of some form work better on people than others.  It can be, for the most part, trial and error until they find out what works best for a person.  Then inevitably it changes a few years down the road quite possibly. 

Both types of insulin are safe for use.  However, animal insulin is no longer used in the USA.  Other countries use swine insulin but bovine insulin is no longer made.  Is there anyone that has used any or all of these types of insulin?  Was any one better than the other?  Please share your experiences about these types of insulins.  As a practicing nurse since the early 1990's, I remember administering animal insulin to residents at the nursing home.  It is amazing what new products have come to market since then, like Lantus, for instance.  I know there are patients out there that have been diabetes for over 20 years.  I would love to hear your thoughts!