How to Use an EpiPen
Step 1: Recognise the Signs of Anaphylaxis
- Anaphylaxis is a severe allergic reaction that can be life-threatening.
- Common symptoms include difficulty breathing, swelling of the face and throat, hives, a rapid or weak pulse, and a drop in blood pressure.
Step 2: Have the EpiPen Ready
- Ensure that you have the EpiPen with you at all times if you have a known severe allergy.
- Familiarise yourself with the EpiPen and read the instructions provided.
Step 3: Remove the Safety Cap
- Hold the EpiPen in your dominant hand with the orange tip pointing downward.
- Use your other hand to remove the blue safety cap by pulling it straight off.
Step 4: Find the Injection Site
- The most common injection site is the outer thigh.
- Avoid injecting into a vein or buttock muscles.
Step 5: Inject the EpiPen
- Swing and firmly push the orange tip against the outer thigh until you hear a click. The injection occurs automatically.
- Hold the EpiPen in place for about 3 seconds to ensure the full dose is delivered.
Step 6: Seek Emergency Medical Attention
- Call 000 immediately, even if the symptoms start to improve.
- Inform emergency responders that you have used an EpiPen.
Step 7: Dispose of the Used EpiPen
- Safely dispose of the used EpiPen according to local regulations. Do not reuse or share.
Step 8: Follow Up
- Even if the symptoms improve after using the EpiPen, seek medical attention promptly to address the allergic reaction and prevent a potential recurrence.
- Always carry two EpiPens in case a second dose is needed.
- Regularly check the expiration date and replace the EpiPen as needed.
- Practice using the EpiPen trainer provided by your healthcare provider to become familiar with the steps.
- Remember, using an EpiPen is an emergency measure. Always seek professional medical attention after administering epinephrine.
- This guide is not a substitute for proper training, so consult with your healthcare provider for personalised advice and instructions.