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Basaglar (insulin glargine) and Lantus (insulin glargine) are brand-name prescription medications. They’re approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to:
- improve blood sugar levels in adults and children ages 6 years and older with type 1 diabetes
- improve blood sugar levels in adults with type 2 diabetes
In this article, we explore some key factors that Basaglar and Lantus share, as well as some differences. If you’re considering treatment with either drug, discussing this information with your doctor can help you decide whether one of these medications could be right for you.
Key differences between Basaglar and Lantus
These are a few of the main differences between Basaglar and Lantus:
- Treatment of type 2 diabetes: Basaglar is approved to treat type 2 diabetes only in adults. Lantus is approved to treat type 2 diabetes in adults and certain children. (See “Uses of Basaglar vs. Lantus” below.)
- Drug forms: Basaglar and Lantus are available in prefilled pens. However, only Basaglar comes as a Tempo Pen, which can pair with a smartphone app to help track your insulin doses. Lantus also comes as a multiuse vial for use with syringes. (See “Frequently asked questions” below.)
Here are the active ingredients and some other information about Basaglar and Lantus.
|Active ingredient||insulin glargine||insulin glargine|
|Drug class||long-acting insulin||long-acting insulin|
A biosimilar is a medication that’s similar to a brand-name biologic drug. Basaglar is a follow-on biologic medication,* and Lantus is a biologic medication.
Biologics are medications made using living cells. It isn’t possible to make an exact copy of a biologic. Generics, on the other hand, refer to medications made from chemicals. A generic is an exact copy of the active drug in a brand-name medication.
As with generics, biosimilars are considered as effective and safe as their brand-name biologic drug. And they tend to cost less than brand-name biologics.
Basaglar and Lantus are available in biosimilar form as the drug Rezvoglar. In addition, the medication Semglee is similar to Basaglar and Lantus and can be substituted for them.
Your doctor and pharmacist can help answer any questions you have.
* Follow-on biologics are basically the same as biosimilars. The difference is that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved follow-on biologics through an older process.
Below are answers to some common questions about Basaglar and Lantus.
How do the Basaglar KwikPen and Tempo Pen compare with the Lantus SoloStar pen?
The Basaglar KwikPen, Basaglar Tempo Pen, and Lantus SoloStar pens are similar:
- All the pens come prefilled with 3 milliliters (mL) of solution containing 300 units of insulin glargine. The pens contain multiple doses of insulin.
- Each pen can deliver a dose of 1 to 80 units of insulin per injection. If your dose is more than 80 units, you’ll need more than one injection per dose.
- You’ll need needles to use with your pen. BD Ultra-Fine pen needles are recommended with each of these pens.
The Basaglar Tempo Pen has a unique feature: It can connect with a smartphone app to track your insulin doses. The Basaglar KwikPen and Lantus SoloStar pen do not have this feature.
Your pharmacist or doctor can answer additional questions you may have about how these pens compare.
Is the insulin in Basaglar the same type as in Lantus?
Essentially, yes. Basaglar and Lantus both contain insulin glargine.
However, because insulin glargine is a biologic medication, it isn’t possible to make an exact copy of the drug. (See “Ingredients of Basaglar and Lantus” above.) And because different companies manufacture Basaglar and Lantus, the drugs are technically not exact copies of each other.
However, Basaglar and Lantus are considered equally effective and safe for treating diabetes. The American Diabetes Association does not recommend either drug over the other in its guidance for diabetes treatment.
To learn more about the insulin in Basaglar and Lantus, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
Here’s a quick look at the dosage and administration for Basaglar and Lantus for the conditions both drugs treat. The two medications are used to treat type 1 diabetes in adults and children ages 6 years and older. Basaglar and Lantus are also used to treat type 2 diabetes in adults.
Dosage for type 1 and type 2 diabetes
|Basaglar for type 1 and type 2 diabetes||Lantus for type 1 and type 2 diabetes|
|Form||• solution in a 3-milliliter (mL) multiple-dose pen called KwikPen, given as a subcutaneous injection|
• solution in a 3-mL multiple-dose pen called Tempo Pen, given as a subcutaneous injection
|• solution in a 10-mL multiple-dose vial for use with syringes, given as a subcutaneous injection|
• solution in a 3-mL multiple-dose pen called SoloStar pen, given as a subcutaneous injection
|Strength||100 units/mL (U-100)||U-100|
|Dose||based on your treatment plan||based on your treatment plan|
|Frequency||once per day||once per day|
|Given by||self (see below)||self (see below)|
You’ll give yourself injections of either Basaglar or Lantus at home. A healthcare professional, such as your doctor or pharmacist, will show you how to give yourself injections.
Basaglar and Lantus are brand-name drugs. Lantus is also available as the biosimilar drugs Rezvoglar and Semglee. (See “Ingredients of Basaglar and Lantus” above.)
You’ll need to purchase pen needles if prescribed the Basaglar KwikPen, the Basaglar Tempo Pen, or the Lantus SoloStar pen.
If your doctor prescribes the multiple-dose vial form of Lantus, you’ll also need to purchase needles and syringes.
Switching between Basaglar and Lantus is possible.
If you’d like to know more about switching between these drugs, talk with your doctor. They can give you additional details, such as dosage conversions in cases where switching is feasible. Your doctor can also help determine the best course of action for your situation.
Even if two drugs treat the same condition or are in the same drug class, your body can still respond differently. It’s important that you do not stop, start, or switch any drug treatment without your doctor’s recommendation.
Basaglar and Lantus have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat the following.
- Basaglar and Lantus are FDA-approved to treat:
- type 1 diabetes in adults and children ages 6 years and older
- type 2 diabetes in adults
- Lantus is also FDA-approved to treat:
- type 2 diabetes in children ages 6 years and older
Note: Neither Basaglar nor Lantus should be used to treat diabetic ketoacidosis. This is a rare but life threatening complication of diabetes.
Basaglar or Lantus and children
Basaglar and Lantus are FDA-approved to treat type 1 diabetes in children ages 6 years and older.
Lantus is also FDA-approved to treat type 2 diabetes in children ages 6 years and older.
Basaglar and Lantus both contain insulin glargine and are used to treat diabetes. These drugs can cause some of the same side effects, as well as some different ones. Some of the side effects reported in clinical trials of these drugs are mentioned below.
Mild side effects
The following table addresses some of the more commonly reported mild side effects of Basaglar and Lantus. The table may also include mild side effects that are less common but that you might have concerns about in some cases.
|Mild side effects||Basaglar||Lantus|
|mildly low blood sugar||x||x|
|injection site reactions, such as pain or itchiness||x||x|
|lipodystrophy (changes in skin thickness near the injection site)||x||x|
|edema (fluid retention)||x||x|
|upper respiratory infection, such as the common cold||x||x|
|other infections, such as urinary tract infection||x||x|
|mild allergic reaction||x||x|
These side effects may be temporary, lasting a few days to weeks. If the side effects last longer, bother you, or become severe, be sure to talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
Serious side effects
The following table addresses the reported serious side effects of Basaglar and Lantus.
|Serious side effects||Basaglar||Lantus|
|severely low blood sugar||x||x|
|hypokalemia (low blood potassium level)||x||x|
|severe allergic reaction||x||x|
If you have serious side effects while using Basaglar or Lantus, call your doctor immediately. If the side effects feel life threatening or you believe you’re having a medical emergency, call 911 or your local emergency number right away.
You may wonder how Basaglar and Lantus compare in terms of their effectiveness in treating diabetes. Below is important information related to how well these medications work.
Comparison studies. Here’s a brief look at whether Basaglar or Lantus was more effective for helping prevent or treat certain conditions.
clinical trialfound Basaglar and Lantus similarly safe and effective for treating type 2 diabetes in adults.
- Another clinical trial that looked at adults with either type 1 or type 2 diabetes also found Basaglar and Lantus similarly safe and effective.
Prescribing information. For information about how effective these drugs were in clinical trials, see the prescribing information for Basaglar and Lantus. Keep in mind that trial results may not apply to your health situation.
Treatment guidelines. Another way to determine whether a drug is considered effective is to look at treatment guidelines.
When an organization includes certain drugs in treatment guidelines, this means that research has shown the drug to be safe and effective.
Basaglar and Lantus are recommended as treatment options for improving blood sugar levels in people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes. This is according to guidance from the American Diabetes Association (ADA). The ADA does not recommend one drug over the other.
Basaglar and Lantus may not be right for you if you have certain medical conditions or other factors that affect your health. The two drugs share some of the same precautions, but they also have different ones. Some of these precautions are mentioned below.
If any of the following medical conditions or other health factors are relevant to you, talk with your doctor before using Basaglar or Lantus.
|if you’ve had an allergic reaction to either drug or any of its ingredients||x||x|
|if you have hypokalemia (low blood potassium level)||x||x|
|if you have heart failure||x||x|
|if you have kidney problems||x||x|
|if you have liver problems||x||x|
Note: For more comprehensive information about these drugs, you can refer to our Basaglar and Lantus articles. You can also see how Lantus compares with another diabetes treatment called Tresiba here.
Some key points to remember when comparing Basaglar and Lantus include:
- Although Basaglar and Lantus are available as prefilled pens, only Basaglar comes as a Tempo Pen. You can pair this pen with a smartphone app to help keep track of your insulin doses. In addition, Lantus comes as a multiuse vial that you use with syringes.
- Basaglar and Lantus are used to treat type 2 diabetes in adults, and type 1 diabetes in adults and certain children. Lantus is also used to treat type 2 diabetes in certain children.
If you’d like to learn more about Basaglar or Lantus, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. They can help answer any questions you have about the drugs’ similarities and differences. They can also help determine whether one drug or the other might work well for you.
Note: For more information about diabetes, see our diabetes hub.
Disclaimer: Medical News Today has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.