Background and aim:
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak has rapidly crossed international boundaries and placed increasing demands on healthcare facilities worldwide. Patients with diabetes and uncontrolled blood glucose levels are at increased risk for poor clinical outcomes and in-hospital mortality related to COVID-19. Therefore, achieving good glycaemic control is of paramount importance among hospitalised patients with COVID-19. Basal-bolus insulin therapy is a safe and effective intervention for the management of hyperglycaemia in hospitalised patients. The aim of this article is to provide a practical guidance for the use of the basal-bolus insulin regimen in hospitalised patients with COVID-19 and diabetes mellitus.
This guidance document was formulated based on the review of available literature and the combined personal experiences of the authors. We provide a comprehensive review on the use of the basal-bolus insulin regimen, including its principles, rationale, indications, prerequisites, initiation, and dose titration, and also suggest targets for blood glucose control and different levels of capillary blood glucose monitoring. Various case scenarios are used to illustrate how optimal glucose control can be achieved, such as through adjustments in doses of prandial and basal insulin, the use of correctional insulin dosing and changes in the timing and content of major and minor meals.
The practical guidance for the use of the basal-bolus insulin regimen in hospitalised patients with COVID-19 and diabetes mellitus presented here can be used for patients admitted to hospital for indications other than COVID-19 and for those in ambulatory care.
Basal insulin; Basal-bolus insulin; COVID-19; Continuous glucose monitoring system; Correctional insulin; Diabetes; Hyperglycaemia; In-hospital hyperglycaemia; Prandial insulin.