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Trends in basal insulin prescribing in older adults with chronic kidney disease in Ontario, Canada: a population-based analysis between from 2010 to 2020

Clemens KK, Ouédraogo AM, Lam M, Muanda Tsobo F, Loeschnik E, Wilk P, Shariff SZ. Diabetes Obes Metab. 2022; 24(4):641-51. Epub 2021 Dec 14. DOI:

Aim — To examine trends in basal insulin prescribing in older adults with CKD.

Materials and Methods — We conducted a population-based study of adults ≥66 years with treated diabetes between January 1 2010 to September 1 2020 in Ontario, Canada. We examined prevalent and incident prescriptions for human neutral protamine Hagedorn, Levemir, glargine-100, Basaglar, glargine-300 and degludec insulin over 43 study intervals. We present trends in those with CKD, and in a subgroup, by estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR). To provide context for prescribing, we provide demographics, comorbidities, and the healthcare utilization of included patients.

Results — In CKD, use of basal insulin was about 2-fold higher than in the general treated diabetes cohort. Prescriptions for NPH declined over time, while prescriptions for Levemir and glargine-100 increased until 2018 and then fell. Following drug formulary approval (September 2018), prescriptions for glargine-300 and degludec increased substantially.

Incident prescriptions for basal insulin in CKD declined over time; however in those an eGFR <30ml/min/1.73m2 rates remained stable. In recent years, rates of degludec and glargine-300 have rivalled glargine-100.

Conclusions — In an era of new oral and injectable diabetes medications, use of basal insulin has declined in older adults with CKD. However, in those with more advanced CKD, basal insulin, particularly newer analogues, remain a mainstay treatment.