Levemir is available in cartridges and in pre-filled pens. Levemir is used to treat diabetes in adults, adolescents and children from the age of one year. The medicine can only be obtained with a prescription.
Diabetes is a disease in which the body does not produce enough insulin to control the level of blood glucose. Levemir is a replacement insulin that is very similar to the insulin made by the body.
Insulin detemir is very slightly different from human insulin. The change means that it is absorbed more slowly by the body, and takes longer to reach its target in the body. This means that Levemir has a long duration of action. The replacement insulin acts in same way as naturally produced insulin and helps glucose enter cells from the blood. By controlling the level of blood glucose, the symptoms and complications of diabetes are reduced.
The studies showed that Levemir controls blood glucose levels in a similar manner to insulin NPH, with less risk of low blood glucose levels during the night and no associated weight gain. In combination with diabetes medicines taken by mouth, Levemir also controlled blood glucose levels in a similar manner to insulin glargine. Patients using Levemir in combination with liraglutide and metformin achieved a decrease of 0.5% in Hb1Ac compared with no decrease in patients using liraglutide and metformin alone. Additionally the weight benefit from liraglutide was sustained when adding Levemir.
The CHMP decided that Levemir’s benefits are greater than its risks and recommended that it be given marketing authorisation.