The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a new drug, Afrezza (insulin human) Inhalation Power, to help treat diabetes with a fast acting inhaled insulin.
Insulin is used to help maintain the glycemic control in adults with diabetes mellitus. It is to be taken at the beginning of each meal.
“Afrezza is a new treatment option for patients with diabetes requiring mealtime insulin,” said Jean-Marc Guettier, M.D., director of the Division of Metabolism and Endocrinology Products in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, in a press release. “Today’s approval broadens the options available for delivering mealtime insulin in the overall management of patients with diabetes who require it to control blood sugar levels.”
The drug’s safety and effectiveness were evaluated in a total of 3,017 participants – 1,026 participants with type 1 diabetes and 1,991 patients with type 2 diabetes.
Keep in mind, Afrezza is not a substitute for long-acting insulin. It must be used in combination with long-acting insulin in patients with type 1 diabetes, and it is not recommended for the treatment of diabetic ketoacidosis, or in patients who smoke.
The FDA is requiring the makers of Afrezza, MannKind Corporation, to conduct three post-marketing studies to ensure the safety of the new drug.
According to the American Diabetes Association, an estimated 24.8 million (18.8 diagnosed and 7.0 million undiagnosed) people in the United States – or approximately 8.3 percent of the population – have diabetes.
Over time, high blood sugar levels can increase the risk for serious complications – including heart disease, blindness as well as nerve and kidney damage. Individuals diagnosed with diabetes in conjunction with one or more of these conditions will also suffer high health and life insurance premiums.
By taking care of your diabetes at an early stage, individuals can reduce their risk of developing additional conditions. Individuals can also protect themselves by purchasing a life insurance policy when they are young and healthier to help secure a lower premium.