Ruling on treating diabetes with a medicine extracted from pigs
Diabetes is a widespread disease which develops as a result of deficiency of insulin secretion at the pancreas gland. Millions of diabetic patients were successfully treated via insulin injections extracted from calves. This is considered an important discovery and an outstanding development in the domain of modern medicine. New types of insulin extracted from pigs have been discovered recently. These types of insulin, among many other advantages, are distinguished for being free from impurities and can be injected in small doses into patients who are immune or allergic to insulin extracted from calves. Unfortunately, no pure insulin has been extracted from calves even though scientific experiments are being conducted for this aim. Is it Haram (prohibited) to use the insulin extracted from pigs knowing that it is taken by means of injection and is not taken orally? This type of insulin has been extracted in a sophisticated chemical way which is beyond the scope of the question.
It is Haram to use this type of insulin which is produced from pigs. This view is based on authentic evidence indicating the prohibition to use unlawful things as medications and on the fact that Allah (Exalted be He) does not make unlawful things a means of bringing about recovery from illnesses. An authentic narration related in this regard is the Hadith in which the Prophet (peace be upon him) is reported to have said, “O Allah’s servants! Treat yourselves medically, but use nothing unlawful.” (Abu Dawud [Book on Medicine] no. 3874.)
May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.
Date: Muharram 15, 1442 AH
Source: Fatawa Al-Lajnah Ad-Da'imah no. 3681
Shaykh Abdul-Aziz ibn Baz
Shaykh Abdullah ibn Ghudayyan
Shaykh Abdul-Razzaq al-Afify
Shaykh Abdullah ibn Qa'ud