Compare Levemir vs. Apidra

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Levemir (insulin detemir)

Prescription only
Lowers blood sugar.

Levemir (insulin detemir) is an effective, long-acting insulin that provides all-day sugar control, but there are similar medications that can be used instead.

3.3/ 5 average rating with 130 reviewsforLevemir
Controls blood sugar.

Apidra (insulin glulisine) is an insulin that controls blood sugar during your meals, but you'll still have to follow your doctor's diet and exercise plan.

Upsides
  • Insulin is the most effective blood sugar lowering medication, as it lowers A1c (average blood sugar over time) up to 2 or 3%. When used correctly, it'll prevent the harmful effects of high blood sugar levels on your organs and blood vessels.
  • Levemir (insulin detemir) is a long lasting insulin that provides consistent, all-day blood sugar control with less risk of low blood sugar.
  • Doses can be easily adjusted to make a customized regimen that's tailored to your body's needs.
  • Starting insulin early in the treatment of type 2 diabetes can maintain your body's insulin producing cells and slow down disease progression.
  • Levemir (insulin detemir) can be used in people with liver or kidney problems.
  • Apidra (insulin glulisine) starts working in as soon as 15 minutes.
  • Programs are available to lower your copay. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist.
  • Can be used in people over 65 and children 4 years of age and older.
Downsides
  • You have to take Levemir (insulin detemir) by injection.
  • You have to check your blood sugar regularly.
  • There is a risk of low blood sugar episodes with use of Levemir (insulin detemir).
  • Levemir (insulin detemir) can cause tiredness, moderate weight gain, and swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet.
  • Your doctor might have to check your kidneys and liver regularly if you've had kidney or liver problems in the past.
  • Since Apidra (insulin glulisine) is an injectable, it might not be a good treatment option for people who are afraid of needles.
  • Only available as a brand name, so Apidra (insulin glulisine) can be expensive.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Injection
  • Injection
Price
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Reviews
130 reviews so far
45%
saidit'sworth it
35%
saiditworked well
22%
saidit'sa big hassle

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Side effects
5possible side effects
  • Upper respiratory tract infection
    26%
  • Headache
    23%
  • Sore throat
    10%
  • Flu-like symptoms
    8%
  • Stomach pain
    6%
See more detailed side effects
1possible side effects
  • Common cold
    11%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Life-threatening low blood sugar (Hypoglycemia)
    • Insulin dose too high
    • Use of other blood sugar lowering medicines
    • Poor injection techniques
  • Complications due to low potassium
    • Use of other medicine that lower potassium
    • Current electrolyte imbalance
  • Severe allergic reactions
    • Allergy to insulin
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Sharing of pen and needles
  • Low blood sugar
    • Changes in diet and exercise
    • Drinking alcohol
    • Taking other medications for diabetes
    • Over age 65
    • Liver or kidney problems
  • Severe allergic reactions
  • Low blood potassium levels
    • Taking laxatives
    • Taking medications that increase urination
  • Mixing of insulins
  • Fluid buildup
    • Taking Avandia or Actos
See more detailed risks and warnings