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28
Oct

Batches of the insulin medicine NovoMix 30 FlexPen and Penfill to be recalled

A small number of batches of the insulin medication NovoMix 30 FlexPen and Penfill (Novo Nordisk) are to be recalled in the EU. The European Medicines Agency (EMA) is recommending that diabetes patients using medicines from the affected batches should switch to products from unaffected batches or alternative treatments.

The affected batches are being recalled because of a manufacturing problem during the filling of the cartridges. The company says that only a small percentage of cartridges (0.14%) contain a wrong amount of insulin. However, in those affected, the level of insulin may vary between 50% and 150% of the labelled insulin units, which could lead to hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia.

Patients can check the batch number printed on the NovoMix 30 FlexPen or the NovoMix 30 Penfill to see whether their medicine is affected.

The numbers of the affected NovoMix 30 FlexPen batches are as follows: CP50912, CP50750, CP50639, CP51706, CP50940, CP50928, CP50903, CP50914, CP50640, CP51095, CP50904, CP50650, CP51098, CP50915, CP50412, CFG0003, CFG0002, CFG0001, CP50902, CP50749, CP50393, CP50950, CP51025, CP50751, CP50375, CP50420, CP51097, CP50641, CP51096 and CP50392.

The numbers of the affected NovoMix 30 Penfill batches are as follows: CS6D422, CS6C628 and CS6C411.

The EMA said: "If the batch number on their pen or cartridge does not correspond to any of the batch numbers listed below, there is no concern.”

For those who have products from the affected batches, the EMA said: “Patients should make an appointment with their doctor or nurse for switching treatment as soon as it is feasible.”

“It is important that these patients do not stop their treatment. Until contact with a healthcare professional has taken place, patients are advised to continue their treatment and to measure their blood glucose levels frequently to ensure adequate blood sugar control.”

Further information about the recall can be found on the EMA website.

22
Oct

Get your seasonal flu jab now – available free to those living with type 1 diabetes

The winter months are drawing near and the nights are getting longer, meaning it’s that time of year again when the NHS launches its seasonal flu vaccination programme.

For most healthy people, flu is an unpleasant but usually self-limiting disease with recovery generally within a week.  However, to be safe, the vaccine is offered free to those who are pregnant or aged over 65, and anyone with certain medical conditions, including those with type 1 diabetes.

The Health Protection Agency found that people in at-risk groups are approximately 11 times more likely to die if they develop flu than individuals with no underlying health conditions. The seasonal flu vaccine offers extra protection against the virus.

Every year, hundreds of thousands of people may see their GP and tens of thousands may be hospitalised because of flu each winter. The best way to protect yourself and your family is to get the flu jab.

It is recommended that all people at risk get the vaccine. If you have type 1 diabetes, or are in any other risk group, contact your GP surgery and make an appointment.

13
Sep

Supplies of Apidra insulin

Sanofi aventis, the company which makes a form of insulin called Apidra (insulin glulisine), have had a production problem at their factory. This has meant that the usual supplies of this insulin have not been manufactured. As a result of this some patients may have a problem obtaining supplies of Apidra. Sanofi aventis has solved the problem, but it is likely to be December before normal supply is resumed.

What to do if you use Apidra insulin?

If you do use Apidra Insulin, sanofi aventis has asked for you to take the below steps.

  • To help make sure that as many patients as possible can obtain the medicines they need, please don’t ask your doctor or nurse for a new prescription of Apidra until you are reaching the end of your own supply.
  • When you have a prescription, take this to the pharmacy as you usually do. Your pharmacist will do everything they can to fulfil your prescription. If this is not possible, your pharmacist will speak to your doctor to let them know that your usual insulin is not available. Your doctor or nurse will then look at what other insulin may be suitable for you as a temporary measure until Apidra is available again. Your pharmacist might be able to supply this after speaking with the doctor, or they might ask you to go back to see your doctor before a choice is made.

If you still need more information, sanofi aventis has a 24 hour-a-day Patient Support Line. The Support Line will be able to help with any questions you may have, and will have up-to-date information as to when Apidra will be available again. The phone number for the Patient Support Line is: 0845 606 6887