Skip to Content

Generic Name: Epinephrine Auto-Injector and Prefilled Syringe (EP i NEF rin)
Brand Name: EpiPen, Symjepi, Twinject

Uses of EpiPen:

  • It is used to treat a very bad allergic response.
  • It may be given to you for other reasons. Talk with the doctor.

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take EpiPen?

  • If you have an allergy to epinephrine or any other part of EpiPen (epinephrine auto-injector and prefilled syringe).
  • If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.

This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with this medicine.

Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take EpiPen with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while I take EpiPen?

  • Tell all of your health care providers that you take this medicine. This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
  • Do not give into the fingers, hands, or feet. Doing so may lead to lower blood flow in these areas. If EpiPen is given on accident, get medical help right away.
  • If you are allergic to sulfites, talk with your doctor. Some products have sulfites.
  • If you have high blood sugar (diabetes), you will need to watch your blood sugar closely.
  • If you are 65 or older, use this medicine with care. You could have more side effects.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using EpiPen while you are pregnant.
  • Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about any risks to your baby.

How is this medicine (EpiPen) best taken?

Use this medicine as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.

  • It is given as a shot into a muscle or into the fatty part of the skin.
  • Read how to use before an emergency happens.
  • Keep EpiPen with you at all times. You may want to keep extra ones at work, school, and home.
  • Someone else may have to give this medicine. Be sure others know where EpiPen is stored and how to give it if needed.
  • Never put your fingers or hand over the tip.
  • Do not take off safety release until ready to use.
  • When you are ready to use, take the pen out of the case.
  • Hold pen with tip down.
  • Make a fist around the pen.
  • Pull off safety release.
  • Jab straight into the outer thigh as you have been told. This medicine may be given through clothes if needed. Inject and hold for as long as you were told.
  • Do not give into the buttocks.
  • If giving this medicine to your child, hold the leg still to prevent injury. Try to limit how much your child moves before and during an injection.
  • Get medical help right away after using EpiPen.
  • Put back in the storage case.
  • Take it with you to the hospital.
  • Do not use this medicine if the solution changes color, is cloudy, or has particles. Get a new one.
  • Do not use if EpiPen (epinephrine auto-injector and prefilled syringe) is out of date. Get a new one.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • Get medical help right away.

See also: Dosage Information (in more detail)

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Chest pain or pressure or a fast heartbeat.
  • A heartbeat that does not feel normal.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Feeling very tired or weak.
  • Rarely, infections have happened where this medicine was given. Sometimes, these infections can be very bad. Call your doctor right away if you have signs of an infection like redness that does not go away, warmth, swelling, or tenderness.

What are some other side effects of EpiPen?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

  • Dizziness.
  • Nervous and excitable.
  • Shakiness.
  • Upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Anxiety.
  • Restlessness.
  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Sweating a lot.
  • Pale skin.
  • Headache.

These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

How do I store and/or throw out EpiPen?

  • Store at room temperature. Do not refrigerate or freeze.
  • Protect from light.
  • Protect from heat.
  • Store in the case you were given.
  • Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to throw out unused drugs.

Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer

  • If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
  • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
  • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
  • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
  • Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. Check with your pharmacist. If you have any questions about EpiPen, please talk with your doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only the healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for a specific patient. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about EpiPen. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from the healthcare provider. You must talk with the healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using EpiPen.

Review Date: September 6, 2017

Hide