Heard of or using BCP PZI?

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (The Main Forum)' started by paige, Dec 28, 2009.

  1. paige

    paige Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    I did not see PZI on the insulin category so I am posting the question here. We have BCP Veterinary Pharmacy right here in Houston and they are compounding the 100% bovine PZI. Since we are not starting insulin til Wednesday I am on the fence about PZI vs Lantus. While Lantus has shown to have a higher percentage of remission on early diagnosed cases, the BCP PZI has also good readings.

    Have any of you had success or heard anything of the BCP PZI? According to artcles this insulin is the closest (molecularly) to feline insulin.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. jojo and bunny

    jojo and bunny Senior Member Moderator

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    Dec 28, 2009
    plenty of people have used it, including myself long ago. however you could not pay me enough money to choose PZI of any kind over lantus or levemir for a cat. no matter how hard i tried or how many tricks i used PZI simply could never ever give me the nice flat curve that the L's do effortlessly. that is just my opinion after almost 18 years of doing this feline sugar dance, sure others will come by that use PZI and like it. however there are studies that prove the remission rate IS far higher on lantus than PZI, you can find threads (and the links to studies) about it on the Think Tank forum of old board.
     
  3. JJ & Gwyn

    JJ & Gwyn Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    When my Gwyn was first diagnosed, we went through several insulins, but Gwyn proved fairly hard to regulate successfully. We finally switched to Idexx PZI-Vet. Gwyn got regulated and has remained mostly regulated since then. She's had a few blips when various other health issues have interfered, but mostly she hasn't had problems, and she's been diabetic for over five years now.

    That said, we use PZI-Vet, which is a manufactured insulin that's unfortunately no longer being made. Over a number of years, my vet has repeatedly stated that she doesn't trust the compounded insulins, as she feels there's too much variance in strength and quality. I personally love the Idexx version of PZI but, because of my vet's opinions on the subject, am ambivalent about BCP's compounded PZI. But there definitely are folks here who love BCP PZI, don't see any problems with variability, and use it successfully in their cats.


    Your appointment is Wednesday? Is it in the morning? If so, I would call around tomorrow to get the hours that your local pharmacies are open on Wednesday. Then I'd go to Supply Cabinet on the old board and get the coupon for the free Lantus, ask your vet to write a prescription for the 5-pen Solostars, and immediately take the prescription to the pharmacy before they close on New Year's Eve (the coupon expires on 31 December, so you'll have to do some juggling to make sure you get it filled on time).

    Using the coupon will let you try Lantus for free and, since each pen lasts at least a month, you'll have plenty of time to give it a fair trial. If you can get your cat into remission on the Lantus, that's all well and good. If you can at least get him regulated on Lantus, that'll give you some time to think things over and decide whether to stay with Lantus or switch to another insulin. And if, for whatever reason, Lantus doesn't work well for you, then you're not out any money and can still try BCP PZI.
     
  4. lynda and scruffy (GA)

    lynda and scruffy (GA) Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    We used BCP for about three years, although not very successfully...... [​IMG] I have nothing but praise for BCP as an organization/supplier; their services are excellent, their shipping procedures are very speedy, their personnel was always helpful, and their insulin is relatively inexpensive. I thought, too, that the thing about the similarity to a cat's own insulin was very significant, but truthfully, it didn't seem to make much difference in our situation.

    It's a very individual thing, this choosing an insulin. For some people and their cats, PZI might be a better choice for someone with very erratic hours who can't always manage the 12/12 shot schedule of Lantus and Levemir. TID dosing is a little more predictable with PZI. If you're obsessed with trying to obtain remission, Lantus would probably be more satisfactory for you. The one thing I noticed with Levemir that I never saw with BCP in my cat was that it was very apparent right from the start that he FELT better. He was a little peppier, he looked better, and he just seemed more like his old, non-diabetic self, somehow.

    If I were starting out now, would I use BCP, or the new ProZinc? Probably not. I think that there's an ever-increasing amount of evidence that the L insulins (Lantus and Levemir), despite being intended for human use, make it possible for the cat's pancreas to heal more frequently than N, Vetsulin, or PZI ever did. It seems to be more common, and more easy, for a cat to stay at a healthy, under-the-renal-threshhold glucose level with the L's. If you have a vet who's comfortable with/informed about Lantus and Levemir and will write you a prescription and support your efforts, that's the way I would go if I were just beginning this journey. And if Levemir hadn't allowed my cat to become diet-controlled, I'd still be happily using it because I do believe that the L's are the best thing to come along for Feline Diabetes treatment in years and years.

    Whatever you decide, I wish you good luck, and encourage you to come back here for support and information and assistance. [​IMG]
     
  5. Cassandra and Sasha

    Cassandra and Sasha Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Completely agree with Lynda that BCP as a company is top notch - great customer service, excellent compounding capabilities for other meds, fast shipping, etc. Also completely agree with Jojo, after using both BCP PZI and Lantus, that I would never ever choose BCP PZI over Lantus again if given the choice. To me, with Sasha, there has been no comparison. Lantus and Levemir are simply in a class by themselves when it comes to insulin.
     
  6. Lisa and Witn (GA)

    Lisa and Witn (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    I used BCP PZI for both Witn and Spot. I was very pleased with how they responded. The results I had with both cats was very similar to when they were on Lantus. One reason for switching was economics - a vial of BCP PZI has a longer shelf life when opened than Lantus does.
     
  7. Terri and Lucy

    Terri and Lucy Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2009
    No one can tell you for sure whether your cat will respond best to PZI or Lantus. Remember it's not just the insulin, it's also how the insulin is used. On this board, you will find people using Lantus much more aggressively than they do PZI because there is a larger support group for Lantus. On PZI, there is more of a tendency toward cautious use while with Lantus, they are more aggressive in search of remission. If you were to look at those PZI users who pursued "tight regulation" and compared them to the average Lantus user, you may find more comparable remission rates. So don't make your decision on insulin type only. Think about how you want to use the insulin. Your vet will most likely encourage cautious use, regardless of which insulin you choose. But there are experienced users here who will help you in ways that your vet can't. Which approach will be most comfortable for you?
     
  8. Helen & Snickers

    Helen & Snickers Member

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    Dec 29, 2009
    I use it for Snickers. It's a good choice for her because she gets a nice curve and great duration (she only needs one shot a day on it). She just went back on insulin this year after two years in remission, and I thought about switching but didn't because she did so well on BCP previously. Lantus needs to be BID, I think, and I didn't want to commit to that if she didn't really need it.
     
  9. chriscleo

    chriscleo Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    personally i liked both PZI and Lantus insulins very much. my experience was with PZI Vet, tho, and not BCP.

    cleo's numbers were better on PZI but her duration was not. i usually ended up having to shoot her every 8 to 10 hours with PZI.

    i noticed absolutely no difference in how she felt on either insulin. i've heard people say their cats' coats got better and they just acted as if they felt better on lantus (or levemir). cleo and i are pretty bonded and i work at home so she's by me most of the day. she's acted exactly the same/coat's the same. she started on PZI for one year and has been on lantus now for 16 months.

    what i liked much better about PZI was my ability to jump in there and give more insulin sooner or adjust the doses depending on her numbers.
    with lantus, slow and steady is more the ticket. hopping between doses can cause higher numbers. i find the 12-13 hr shot duration its best characteristic. if she's not doing well, tho, it takes at least two to three shots to get her back, which i did not see with PZI. BUT i see flatter curves with lantus, which i think should be easier on their bodies. PZI could drop her pretty far. i think both insulins took about the same amount of time to get her to a good dose for her but i do appreciate having the Tilly protocol to follow in determining Cleo's right dose on Lantus.

    so personally i like both insulins very much and think the main factor is your cat herself/himself. there's no guarantee any one insulin will be the BEST for your cat. you really won't know until you try. but if you can get to a pharmacy within the next two days you can get at least 5 months worth of lantus for absolutely free if you get a coupon for the free lantus and a prescription for the Solostar Pens (you just stick a syringe into a small grey circle to withdraw the insulin), so that would tip me over into trying Lantus first. the lantus forum on FDMB has been very active, so you'd get a lot of support if you chose lantus. pzi's forum has been a lot quieter.

    you may still be able to get a free half vial of U100 BCP PZI if that's your preference (but i think this is the first time we've seen a generous free insulin offer from lantus' manufacturer/distributor). the last time i checked BCP's website it was being reconstructed so i'm not up on what's going on with it now.
     
  10. Lisa and Spooky (GA)

    Lisa and Spooky (GA) Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    It was a last ditch effort for Spooky and it was terrific! At the time, my choices were the Humulins (since discountinued) or PZI Vet which required a minimum 3 vial purchase (2001). BCP was very economical, shipped overnight to Florida and was a perfect match for Spooky. He was on that until his death from cancer in 2005.

    Lisa & Spooky (GA)
     
  11. paige

    paige Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    WOW! You have all been so much help. All of your experiences and advice have made me feel much better. I know that we are going to start on the Lantus.....and I am going to try and get the free pens if I can. Tomorrow is Webber's first day on the shots. He is going to be dropped off at the vet all day (along with my Lantus I am picking up from the pharmacy today). I know that people have commented NOT to drop off your kitty for the insulin testing if he/she is healthy, but personally I feel better having the vet perform the initial curve and watch him for how he reacts.

    Thank you all so much for everything. I have been here everyday on this message board since Webber was diagnosed last week :D
     
  12. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    When you get the script for the Lantus..

    Make sure you get a script for u100 syringes as well. You will not actually be using the pens to shoot with, you will be drawing up the insulin from the cartridge using a syringe. You will not need the solostar needles (they are tips for the pens) so if the pharmacist tries to add them to your order, don't get them.

    The syringes you want to ask for are:
    U100
    3/10cc (aka .3cc)
    30 or 31 gauge (31 is smaller than 30)
    with (and this is highly important) 1/2 unit markings


    Also, before you fill your free insulin script, start calling pharmacies right now to look for the best pricing so that when you are actually paying for it, you'll be at the pharmacy with the best pricing already. It can vary widely. A 5 month (5pack) supply can range from $150-$250. I get my Levemir from RiteAid because they have a discount card and I save 20% on each purchase. Walgreens has a similar discount card and you may find more places with them. Check your warehouse stores such as Costco, Sams, BJs.. if they have a pharmacy they may be competitive. Many of our members get their insulin from Canada.. check the supply closet on the other forum for a thread which contains links to several Canadian pharmacies. Insulin is less expensive there and the members who buy from there are happy with their purchases.

    Finally, check out the stickies on the Lantus forum for really good info on buying, handling, storing and using Lantus. Good luck!!
     
  13. paige

    paige Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Thank you for reminding me about the needles Carolyn. I did not know if I need a script for those or not. When I checked for the laws in Texas is says may vary by region :? My husband was asking me about some Canadian pharmacies just last night.
     
  14. Carolyn and Spot

    Carolyn and Spot Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    You can just call a pharmacy and ask if a script is required for insulin syringes :) A script is not required here in Virginia but there are several states that do require scripts
     
  15. chriscleo

    chriscleo Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    recommend globaldrugsdirect.com and canadadrugsonline.com (both canadian) very heartily! all the lantus i've gotten from canada has lasted longer than what i've gotten in the US (from costco or walgreens). i saved almost $70 buying from canada, too.
    not sure if others here have had the same experience but i'm very sold on the canadian pharmacies so far. i live in california and i'm not sure if there's a difference for people living elsewhere.
     
  16. Karen and Flo

    Karen and Flo Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
  17. Dawn and Mateo Wiggles & Toby

    Dawn and Mateo Wiggles & Toby Member

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    Dec 30, 2009
    Can someone please remind me how long a vial of BCP PZI is good for? I mean, how long before an opened vial poops out?
     
  18. chriscleo

    chriscleo Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    dawn, BCP has a shorter shelf life of about 6 months. i got 8 months routinely out of PZI Vet.
    user experiences may vary.
     

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