Prescribing insulin in type 1 diabetes mellitus: an update for general practitioners
The pancreas in a non-diabetic patient constantly secretes a small amount of insulin (basal secretion). After meals, a larger amount of insulin is secreted (bolus secretion) to cope with the increased blood glucose that occurs following a meal.
The goal of insulin therapy in diabetics is to mimic this secretion pattern to provide enough insulin throughout a 24-hour period to meet the basal requirements and to deliver higher boluses of insulin to meet the glycaemic effect of meals. To achieve good diabetes control, an individually tailored insulin treatment regimen is required.
South African Family Practice Vol. 48 (10) 2006: pp. 30-36