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Epipen - Overview
The EpiPen and EpiPen Jr. are injections containing epinephrine that are used in the emergency treatment of Type I allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis. People who need an Epipen prescription can use Push Health to connect with a medical provider who can prescribe an Epipen if appropriate to do so.
What Does An EpiPen Do?
What does an EpiPen do? The EpiPen contains the medication epinephrine, a beta-adrenergic receptor agonist and non-selective alpha receptor agonist. The EpiPen is used in the treatment of Type I allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis to stinging and biting insects, allergen immunotherapy, drugs and foods. Epinephrine is a sympathomimetic catecholamine that deteriorates quickly and works by reducing the amount of vasodilation and vascular permeability, improving intravascular volume. Epinephrine also helps to reduce bronchospasm and wheezing by relaxing smooth muscles in the bronchi. Epinephrine has a rapid onset and short duration when injected via the EpiPen. The EpiPen and EpiPen Jr. are not meant to be used as a substitute for immediate medical care but rather as a supportive measure in an emergency situation that requires immediate medical or hospital care.
EpiPen - Coupon and Cost
The EpiPen has been in the news in the past because of its high cost. In recent years, a generic EpiPen and EpiPen Jr. has come to market, reducing the cost to approximately $60 per EpiPen 0.3 mg (epinephrine). Additionally, EpiPen coupons can be found online and, for some people, insurance will cover the cost of the EpiPen. Each EpiPen is single use. The EpiPen injection is available as 0.3 mg/0.3 mL (0.3 mL, 1:1000) epinephrine injection in a prefilled auto-injector. The EpiPen Jr. is a pre-filled auto-injector with 0.15 mg/0.3 mL (0.3 mL 1:2000) epinephrine injection. Because epinephrine is sensitive to light, it should be stored in the carrier tube at 20° to 25° C. For many people, the recommended way to use an EpiPen is to administer it intramuscularly or subcutaneously into the anterolateral aspect of the thigh. The EpiPen can be administered through clothing.
Can I Buy EpiPens Online?
An EpiPen is a prescription medication in the US and is not available over the counter (OTC). As such, one cannot just buy EpiPen online without first consulting with a medical provider. People who need an EpiPen prescription can utilize Push Health to connect with a licensed medical provider who can prescribe an EpiPen when safe and appropriate to do so.
EpiPen - Side Effects
The EpiPen can cause significant side effects. Side effects from EpiPen use include tremor, anxiety, palpitations, restlessness, weakness, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and headache. Epinephrine can interact with other medications and should be used carefully when done so. People with a hypersensitivity or previous allergy to an EpiPen or any of its components should not use it. An EpiPen and alcohol should not be used together. Before obtaining an EpiPen, potential users should discuss side effects related to EpiPen use with their pharmacist and medical provider.
More EpiPen Information
Last updated June 1, 2019. Given the evolving nature of medicine and science, this information might not be accurate and should not be construed as medical advice or diagnosis / treatment recommendations. Please consult a licensed medical provider if you have additional questions.