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Resources

Frequently asked questions

Find answers to some of the most common questions about EpiPen®. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, please contact us and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

The answers for EpiPen® also apply to EpiPen® Jr unless otherwise stated.

  • Q.What is an EpiPen®?

    A.EpiPen® is an adrenaline auto-injector (also known as an AAI), and is only available on prescription from the doctor. People who are at risk of anaphylaxis will be prescribed auto-injectors to use in an emergency.

    EpiPen® delivers an appropriate and immediate dose of adrenaline to treat an anaphylactic reaction, while waiting for the ambulance to arrive.

  • Q.How does adrenaline work?

    A.Adrenaline is the first-line, emergency treatment for anaphylaxis. Adrenaline acts quickly to open the airways, stop swelling and raise the blood pressure.

  • Q.What is the difference between EpiPen® and EpiPen® Jr?

    A.EpiPen® and EpiPen® Jr are both adrenaline auto-injectors, and contain different doses of adrenaline. EpiPen® contains 0.3mg adrenaline and EpiPen® Jr contains 0.15mg adrenaline. The prescribing physician will prescribe EpiPen® or EpiPen® Jr depending on the patient’s body weight.

    EpiPen® 0.3mg is recommended for anyone weighing over 25kg.

    EpiPen® Jr. 0.15mg is recommended for children weighing between 7.5 – 25kg. For children weighing more than 25kg, EpiPen® 0.3mg is recommended.

  • Q.How should I use my EpiPen®?

    A.Remove the blue safety cap, and then jab the EpiPen® into your outer thigh to release the hidden needle and the dose of adrenaline. Hold the pen in place for 3 seconds, before removing it and dialling 999. Click here for full instructions.

    It is best to practise regularly with an EpiPen® Trainer. You can order one here* if you do not have one, or ask your doctor.

    *Despatched to the UK only.

  • Q.How will I know that my EpiPen® has worked and that I have received the adrenaline I need?

    A.When you jab the EpiPen® into your thigh, the needle and the dose of adrenaline will be released. After removing the EpiPen®, the orange end will extend to cover the needle and the viewing window will go dark. There will still be some adrenaline left in the pen, but this is perfectly normal. You will quickly start to feel that the adrenaline is working.

    Remember, each EpiPen® can only be used once so it is important to always carry two. If symptoms do not improve after 5 minutes, use a second EpiPen®.

  • Q.Can EpiPen® be used through clothing?

    A.Yes, even jeans. Take care to avoid zips, buttons, buckles, seams and pocket contents.

  • Q.After using my EpiPen® what should I do?

    A.Always seek medical attention. You must dial 999, ask for an ambulance and say ‘anaphylaxis’ (pronounced ‘anna-fill-axis’) immediately after using the EpiPen®. Make sure you give your used pen to the paramedic. Remember to get a new EpiPen® as soon as possible.

  • Q.There is an ‘air’ bubble in my EpiPen®, is it still OK to use?

    A.The bubble is a type of gas called nitrogen, and it is perfectly normal to find it in an EpiPen®. Don’t worry about using your pen as the bubble will not interfere with how it works.

  • Q.When should I use my EpiPen®?

    A.Your doctor or nurse will tell you how to recognise the symptoms of anaphylaxis. If you think you have come into contact with your trigger, make sure you have your EpiPen® to hand and use it immediately if you start to experience symptoms of a severe allergic reaction. You must dial 999, ask for an ambulance and say ‘anaphylaxis’ (pronounced ‘anna-fill-axis’) immediately after using the EpiPen® and remain lying down or seated until the ambulance arrives.

  • Q.Is there a training device I can practise with?

    A.Yes, you can order a Trainer Pen here*. Practise as much as you can to make sure you know what to do in an emergency. The instructions on how to use the EpiPen® Trainer are the same as an EpiPen®, although there is no adrenaline and no needle. The Trainer Pen can be reset so that you can keep practicing with your friends and family. The EpiPen® is for a single use only so can only be used once.

    *Despatched to the UK only.

  • Q.What should I tell family, friends and workmates?

    A.Tell them your triggers, the signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction, where you keep your EpiPen® and how to use it. Show them this website, and practice with your EpiPen® Trainer. You can also download and print information from the Resources page for them to keep.

  • Q.How can I remember to replace my EpiPen® when it is due to expire?

    A.Sign up for our Expiry Alert Service and receive text and/or email messages reminding you to visit your doctor or pharmacist in time to replace your EpiPen® before it expires.

  • Q.What do I do if I notice that my EpiPen® is out of date?

    A.EpiPen® expires on the last day of the month indicated. For example, if it expires in April, it remains valid (not expired) until April 30.

    Make sure you see your GP or pharmacist as soon as possible to get a new pen. Use the EpiPen® Expiry Alert Service to receive reminders when your pen is about to expire.

  • Q.Can I register more than one EpiPen®?

    A.Yes. If they all have the same expiry date you only need to fill in one form. If they have different expiry dates, you need to fill in a different form for each EpiPen®.

  • Q.How should I store my EpiPen®?

    A.Adrenaline is sensitive to light and can be damaged by high or low temperatures. Do not store your EpiPen® above 25°C and do not refrigerate or freeze. Keep the EpiPen® container in the outer carton to protect from light.

  • Q.Are there any precautions I should take with my EpiPen® before I go abroad?

    A.Make sure that you have enough EpiPen® with you – it may be difficult and expensive to get replacement pens abroad. Organise this with your GP several weeks before you go.

    Airlines will often require a letter from your doctor to allow you to carry your EpiPen® with you onto the aircraft.
    Click here to print off a Travel Certificate for your doctor to fill in – make sure you get it done in good time before you travel. If you have a food allergy, you should also discuss meal options (if provided).

  • Q.I am travelling to a very different climate to the UK and wondered if my EpiPen® would still work properly?

    A.EpiPen® are used all over the world and used in a variety of climates very different from the UK. When travelling abroad, you should take the same care as you would in the UK and observe the storage recommendations in the package leaflet. Your EpiPen® should never be exposed to direct sunlight or very hot or cold temperatures for prolonged periods, and should never be refrigerated or frozen. You should keep the container in the outer carton in order to protect from light. It may also be worth contacting the airport you are travelling from and the company you are travelling with to see if there are special requirements they may have for travelling with specialist medicines.

Downloads

  • EpiPen® Patient Information leaflet

    Included with your EpiPen®, this leaflet explains how, why and when you should use your pen.

    Download

  • EpiPen® Jr Patient Information leaflet

    Included with your EpiPen®, this leaflet explains how, why and when you should use your pen.

    Download

  • Guide to using your EpiPen® Auto-Injector & Trainer Pen

USEFUL LINKS

Anaphylaxis Campaign

The only UK wide charity operating solely for the growing numbers of people at risk from severe allergic reactions.

Visit

Allergy UK

The leading national charity providing support, advice and information for those living with allergic disease.

Visit

Free expiry alert service

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Sign up for our expiry alert service and receive free reminders by text or email when your EpiPen® is about to expire.

SIGN UP HERE

*Need a trainer pen?

If you need an EpiPen® Trainer you can order one directly from us for free!

ORDER NOW

Always be sure to take two!

If you have been prescribed an adrenaline auto-injector because of the risk of anaphylaxis, you should always carry two with you at all times.

** Keep the container in the outer carton in order to protect from light.