Lyumjev, A New Fast-Acting Insulin

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A new ultra-rapid acting insulin from Eli-Lilly, Lyumjev (LOOM-jev), is now available. Lyumjev contains Humalog along with extra ingredients, absorbing faster and reducing post-meal spikes in blood sugar. Tiny amounts of treprostinil, an analog of prostacyclin, and sodium citrate were added to relax blood vessels near the injection or infusion site, speeding up its action. It is unknown which of these additives may be causing some pumpers’ site issues, discussed below.

You can inject Lyumjev at the start of a meal, but taking it as suggested by Lilly after a meal makes no sense unless the meal has really slow carbs. Bolusing at the start of a meal is really convenient when you don’t know exactly when your food will arrive. Mealtime flexibility and peace of mind increase, while post-meal high glucose episodes disappear.

Lyumjev joins Fiasp from Novo Nordisk as another fast (or ultra-rapid) acting insulin on the market. Both are faster than the rapid-acting Novolog, Humalog, and Apidra. Although not yet approved for use in pumps, reports from users indicate the Lyumjev, unlike Fiasp, might be more stable in pumps. However, a loss of action and site issues are being reported. The use of a Lyumjev pen for occasional high readings may be one solution. If you are using or have used Lyumjev in your pump, share your experience in the comments section below.

Lyumjev’s action time (blue) compared to Humalog (gray)

PK Versus PD

Lyumjev shows up quicker in the blood (its pharmacokinetics) and is out of the system faster than Humalog, as illustrated by the first graph.

To set your duration of insulin action (DIA) or insulin action time (IAT) in your pump or bolus calculator, use the pharmacodynamic graph below. Rather than how soon it appears or disappears in the blood, pharmacodynamics shows how long Lyumjev will actually lower your glucose. FYI, the 15 unit time gives the most accurate time for setting DIA or AIT. For more information, visit Insulin Stacking or see our article on Confusion about DIA.

Lyumjev pharmacodymics for selection of DIA
How long Lyumjev actually lowers your glucose. Use 15 unit dose time for the best accuracy.

Pricing

Available in U-100 and U-200 pens or U-100 vial, Lyumjev is sold at the same $287 list price as Humalog. The Lilly Insulin Value Program caps the price of insulin at $35 per month for insurance coverage. Find more information at Insulin Affordability. For those without insurance or eligible financial assistance, Lyumjev will be just as unaffordable as most other insulins on the market.

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