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Diabetes Technol Ther. 2011 Feb;13(2):121-6. doi: 10.1089/dia.2010.0124.

Conversion from intravenous insulin to subcutaneous insulin after cardiovascular surgery: transition to target study.

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Department of Medicine, Union Memorial Hospital, Baltimore, Maryland 21218, USA.



No study of transition from intravenous to subcutaneous insulin after cardiac surgery with dose based on percentage of intravenous total daily insulin (TDI) has reported a clearly superior regimen for achieving target blood glucose. We compared three first-dose transition strategies for insulin glargine: two based on TDI alone and one that also took body weight into account.


Mostly obese, type 1 and type 2 diabetes patients (n = 223) undergoing cardiac surgery were randomized to receive insulin glargine subcutaneously at 60% or 80% of TDI or in a dose based on TDI and body weight.


Transition to subcutaneous insulin occurred 27.4 ± 6.6 h after surgery. Over the study period, mean proportion of blood glucose values within target range (80-140 mg/dL) were 0.34 ± 0.24, 0.35 ± 0.24, and 0.36 ± 0.22 in the 60% TDI, 80% TDI, and weight-based groups, respectively. This difference was not significant. Significantly more insulin corrections were needed in the 60% TDI group than in the weight-based group. There was only one incidence of hypoglycemia (blood glucose < 40 mg/dL).


No subcutaneous insulin regimen implemented approximately 1 day after cardiac surgery showed significantly better control of blood glucose over the 3-day study period. Further studies are needed to determine optimal formulae for effecting an early transition to subcutaneous insulin after cardiac surgery or whether it is preferable and/or necessary to continue intravenous insulin therapy for an additional period of time.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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