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Diabetes Care. 2005 Apr;28(4):950-5.

Reduced hypoglycemia risk with insulin glargine: a meta-analysis comparing insulin glargine with human NPH insulin in type 2 diabetes.

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  • 1Dallas Diabetes and Endocrine Center, Medical City Dallas, 7777 Forest Lane, Suite C-618, Dallas, TX 75230, USA.



Insulin glargine (LANTUS) is a once-daily basal insulin analog with a smooth 24-h time-action profile that provides effective glycemic control with reduced hypoglycemia risk (particularly nocturnal) compared with NPH insulin in patients with type 2 diabetes. A recent "treat-to-target" study has shown that more patients on insulin glargine reached HbA(1c) levels < or =7.0% without confirmed nocturnal hypoglycemia compared with NPH insulin. We further assessed the risk for hypoglycemia in a meta-analysis of controlled trials of a similar design for insulin glargine versus once- or twice-daily NPH insulin in adults with type 2 diabetes.


All studies were 24-28 weeks long, except one 52-week study, for which interim 20-week data were used.


Patient demographics were similar between the insulin glargine (n = 1,142) and NPH insulin (n = 1,162) groups. The proportion of patients achieving target HbA(1c) (< or =7.0%) was similar between insulin glargine-and NPH insulin-treated patients (30.8 and 32.1%, respectively). There was a consistent significant reduction of hypoglycemia risk associated with insulin glargine, compared with NPH insulin, in terms of overall symptomatic (11%; P = 0.0006) and nocturnal (26%; P < 0.0001) hypoglycemia. Most notably, the risk of severe hypoglycemia and severe nocturnal hypoglycemia were reduced with insulin glargine by 46% (P = 0.0442) and 59% (P = 0.0231), respectively.


These results confirmed that insulin glargine given once daily reduces the risk of hypoglycemia compared with NPH insulin, which can facilitate more aggressive insulin treatment to a HbA(1c) target of < or =7.0% in patients with type 2 diabetes.

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