November 14th 2008
Treatment of type 2 diabetes should achieve and maintain euglycemia, thereby preventing complications from this progressive disease. Current antidiabetic therapies should be a part of a multimodal management program that includes diet, exercise, and blood pressure and lipid control. Oral antidiabetic drugs are still first-line therapy for type 2 diabetes, but intensification of therapy, including starting insulin, should occur every 2 to 3 months as needed to achieve euglycemia. The first insulin added is typically a basal insulin, which is effective in lowering fasting plasma glucose (FPG). A persistently elevated glycated hemoglobin (HgbA1C) level despite near or complete normalization of FPG, however, indicates postprandial hyperglycemia. In these cases, the addition of bolus insulin is required to reduce postprandial glucose (PPG). Several approaches to initiate and titrate insulin can be used based on FPG, PPG, HgbA1C, and patient factors.