A New Possible Type 2 Diabetes Injection: IDegLira

As we learn more about diabetes and the huge impacts it can have on patients’ everyday lives, it is almost natural to wonder why treatment has not become easier or safer or perhaps more importantly, more convenient. A massive aspect of medication adherence is the convenience, especially when focusing on diabetes. Most patients do not understand that nonadherence to one diabetes medication however can lead to the addition of more and therefore a further inconvenience to the patient. Patients also understandably dislike the adverse effects that typically accompany diabetes medications, such as hypoglycemia and weight gain. Hopefully, a new drug may be able to diminish this growing issue.

IDegLira is an injectable diabetes management medication that is a combination of basal insulin and GLP-1RA, or liraglutide. The medication is injected once daily and tackles two different physiological deficits in patients with type 2 diabetes. The basal insulin reduces fasting blood glucose while the GLP-1RA keeps postprandial glucose values under control. A study with patients already on basal insulin was completed to see if adding insulin aspart or liraglutide would control their glucose levels better. The addition of liraglutide was recorded to be more effective as well as less hindering, as it had lower rates of hypoglycemia and weight loss in patients as opposed to weight gain.

Positive results have been seen in several clinical trials involving the combination drug of insulin basal and GLP-1RA. Hopefully this more convenient, effective, and safe medication will come out on the market soon to aid those with type 2 diabetes.

Do you think patients would truly be more adherent to this medication, a single injection, than metformin, a single oral tablet per day? Even if this is more effective, will patients choose an injection over a pill?

Reference: Hughes E. IDegLira: Redefining insulin optimisation using a single injection in patients with type 2 diabetes. Primary Care Diabetes. Article in Press. https://www-clinicalkey-com.pitt.idm.oclc.org/#!/content/journal/1-s2.0-S1751991815001837

3 thoughts on “A New Possible Type 2 Diabetes Injection: IDegLira”

  1. It is interesting to see the new types of treatments that are being developed for the management of diabetes. I do think that many patients would choose a pill over an injection, even if the injection was more effective. Therefore, it seems like this drug might be most effective when given to patients who are already using injections of insulin, liraglutide, or other injected treatments. Given that liraglutide can also be used to lower body weight, I would be interested to see if this combination of insulin and liraglutide would be an effective treatment for overweight individuals suffering from Type 1 diabetes.

    1. Personally, I do not think that patients would be more adherent or willing to take the single injection a day when they could get away with taking one pill a day. The reason I say this is because many people are more comfortable with taking pills then they are with needles and injectable. However, if a patient was already taking insulin I think that this would be a better alternative for them to use. This way they would only have to inject themselves once rather than after every meal. Also for patients that are suffering from both obesity and diabetes this could be a viable option for them as a therapy to treat both disease states since liraglutide is supposed to help with weight loss.

  2. This is very interesting and looks like a promising medication for patients with diabetes. I agree with the previous comments that this medication will serve best in patients who already administer insulin or another injectable medication. Additionally, patients with a medical background may prefer this medication due to the efficacy or the ease of administering a combination medication.
    I would be interested in knowing the comparative adverse effects of the medications. There may be an increase in adherence if this medication provided less adverse effects. Although, the patients must be comfortable injecting the medication properly.
    As pharmacists, we can help patients by providing education on injectable medications and encouraging their ease of access. Also, services could be provided to help patients willing to come to the pharmacy daily to administer their medication. I do not think it is satisfying to simply allow a potentially effective drug remained unused because patients are not willing to administer injections.

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