Patient/caregiver was educated on sliding-scale insulin therapy as follows:
- In the sliding-scale method, the dose of insulin to be taken is based on your blood sugar level, just before your meal. If the pre-meal blood sugar is high, you take higher dose of insulin.
- In this therapy model, blood sugar is taken about four times a day (every four to six hours, before every meal) and the dose of insulin to be taken is based on the blood sugar reading.
- Usually, fast acting insulins, such as, Apidra or Humalog or Novolog are given on sliding scale therapy.
- Sliding scale therapy always considers the performance of the previous insulin dose, reflected by the pre-meal blood sugar. This method of treatment does not account for insulin needed for the current meal.
- As the doses are administered four to six times a day and as fast acting insulins are used usually in this method, doses of insulin can get stacked up, resulting in very low blood sugar readings.
- Currently, the popular practice is to give the patient a long acting basal insulin that will control the blood sugars steadily over a period of 24 hours. Along with this, giving rapid acting mealtime insulin along with a correction dose to regulate blood sugar levels after meals will be more effective.