*I am not a certified medical professional. For your specific medical needs please refer to your medical team.
Everyone who has food allergies needs to have an auto-injector of epinephrine and ideally have 2 of them as they are a life-saving option in case of anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis is the most severe form of a food allergic reaction that can result in death if not treated right away with epinephrine.
Here are 5 facts to know about the auto-injector of epinephrine:
1. Always use your auto-injector if you are having a severe food allergic reaction and then call 911 right away. If in doubt, err on the side of caution and saving a life. Don’t take a wait and see approach.
2. It is ideal to have 2 auto-injectors available to you in case of a bi-phasic reaction. This is when you have administered your epinephrine and some time has passed but the reaction begins again. This would call for a second dose of epinephrine to stop the second reaction. A good idea when you are traveling or visiting someone is to know where the nearest hospital is located.
3. Make sure you and those who are around you understand how and when to use the auto-injector. There are trainers and a link below for videos on how to administer the dose of epinephrine with the auto-injector.
4. Check the expiration date and temperature range on your auto-injector for optimum storage and usage.
5. There are auto-injectors for small children and adults in different dosages according to weight.
Misconceptions and the Corrections:
1. Misconception: You should stab the auto-injector of epinephrine in the region heart for a food allergy anaphylactic reaction.
- Correction: You never administer the auto-injector of epinephrine into your heart. It is primarily administered in the upper or outer thigh region.
2. Misconception: When administering epinephrine have the person stand up and then start moving to help the medicine disperse.
- Correction: Lying down is the best position if possible during or right after you administer epinephrine. If the person is vomiting make sure and lie them on their side. Sitting is the next best position.
3. Misconception: I can just take a lot of Benadryl for an anaphylactic reaction.
- Correction: Benadryl or any other over the counter medication is not a substitute for epinephrine.
4. Misconception: I can’t take my auto-injector of epinephrine on the plane in my carry on.
- Correction: Auto-Injectors are allowed on planes and in your carry on.
5. Misconception: I have to have bare skin exposed at the site where I am injecting my epinephrine.
- Correction:You do not have to remove your clothes to use an auto-injectors. It will work through normal clothes including jeans.
- Emergency Plans and Anaphylaxis visit: www.foodallergy.org
Current Epinephrine Auto-Injectors direct sites with their training videos for their specific devices listed below:
- Auvi-Q® at:www.auvi-q.com.
- EpiPen® and EpiPenJr.® at: www.epipen.com.
- Generic Epinephrine Auto-Injector (Authorized Generic of EpiPen®) at: www.my-generic-epinephrine-auto-injector.com/en.
- Epinephrine Auto-Injector (Authorized Generic of Adrenaclick® by Amneal Pharmaceuticals, formerly Impax Laboratories) at: Adrenaclick® at www.epinephrineautoinject.com.
- Teva’s Generic EpiPen® (Epinephrine Injection, USP) Auto-Injector at: www.tevaepinephrine.com.
- Symjepi (epinephrine) Injection™at: www.symjepi.com