Classification of Insulin

Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas. Insulin helps regulate blood sugar levels in the body. For people with diabetes, the Insulin injections are crucial in managing diabetes.
The purpose of this article is to provide a classification of insulins.

Types of Insulin

There are four main types of insulin

  1. Rapid-acting
  2. Short-acting
  3. Intermediate-acting
  4. Long-acting insulins
  • Rapid-acting insulins– It work quickly to lower blood sugar levels and are typically used before or after meals.
  • Short-acting insulins– It act within 30 minutes and are usually taken before meals to control blood sugar levels during the meal.
  • Intermediate-acting insulins– They have a slower onset and are typically used to maintain blood sugar levels between meals and overnight.
  • Long-acting insulins– They work slowly over an extended period of time and are usually taken once a day to help maintain consistent blood sugar levels.


KD tripathi classification of insulin
Clssification of Insulin


  • Rapid acting– (Insulin analogues) Insulin lispro, Insulin aspart, Insulin glulisine
  • Short acting– Regular (soluble) insulin
  • Intermediate acting-Insulin zinc suspension (Lente insulin), Neutral protamine hagedorn (NPH) or Isophane insulin
  • Long acting– (Insulin analogues) Insulin glargine, Insulin detemir

Classification Based on Origin

Insulins are also classified based on their origin, including

  1. Animal insulin
  2. Human insulin
  3. Analog insulin

Animal insulin– Animal insulin is derived from the pancreas of cows or pigs and is less commonly used today due to the risk of allergic reactions.

Human insulin– Human insulin is made through genetic engineering and is less likely to cause allergic reactions.

Analog insulin– Analog insulin is a synthetic form of insulin that is designed to closely mimic the body’s natural insulin production.

Classification Based on Delivery Method

Insulins can also be classified based on their delivery method.

There are several options available, including:

  • Insulin pens
  • Syringes
  • Insulin pumps

Insulin pens– Insulin pens are pre-filled devices that allow for easy and convenient injection of insulin.
Syringes– Syringes require the user to draw the insulin from a vial and manually inject it into the body.
Insulin pumps– Insulin pumps are small devices that are worn outside the body and deliver insulin through a tube inserted under the skin.


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