Once I go on insulin will I ever be able to get off of it? My wife has interstial lung disease from rheumatoid arthritis and has been in the hospital. My sugar has been running in the 200s and the last A1C was 6.8 But since this happened to my wife it's been out of control. My doctor wants me to go on insulin. I've lost weight (from 224 down to 197 since November) since this all happened. Does stress have a lot to do with this?

Patty Bonsignore


Beginning insulin does not mean you will have to stay on it forever, though most people do end up staying on it. Many people think that insulin is like a drug that your body becomes dependent on. In fact, insulin is more like a supplement than a drug, replacing or supplementing the insulin that the body is not able to make enough of naturally. Stress does cause blood glucose levels to go up, and your wife’s hospitalization has no doubt been stressful for you. Starting insulin during this stressful time will not hurt you, and, in fact, may make you feel better and more energetic. Your A1C at 6.8% is in target; most likely your next one will be a little higher due to the stress. Once your wife’s situation is more stable, you may find that your blood glucose numbers will go down again, and at that time you can think about going off the insulin to see how you do. The good news about insulin is that it is very safe, has few side effects and works really well to control blood glucose levels.

March 17, 2013 at 9:16 am

1 reply

Anonymous 2013-06-02 19:29:13 -0500 Report

Insulin has side effects for me, it makes me hungry, it makes me bloat where I inject it in my stomach and thighs. I have gained 5 pounds since I started using insulin 3 months ago. And its EXPENSIVE!