Skip to main content

Adrenalin

Generic name: epinephrine injection (EP i NEF rin)
Brand name: Adrenalin, Auvi-Q, Epinephrinesnap-EMS, Epinephrinesnap-V, EpiPen 2-Pak, EpiPen JR 2-Pak, EPIsnap, Symjepi
Drug class: Adrenergic bronchodilators, Catecholamines, Vasopressors

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com on Aug 27, 2021. Written by Cerner Multum.

What is Adrenalin?

Adrenalin is used to treat severe allergic reactions (anaphylaxis) to insect stings or bites, foods, drugs, and other allergens.

Epinephrine auto-injectors may be kept on hand for self-injection by a person with a history of severe allergic reaction.

Epinephrine is also used to treat exercise-induced anaphylaxis, or to treat low blood pressure that is caused by septic shock.

Adrenalin may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Warnings

Seek emergency medical attention after any use of epinephrine to treat a severe allergic reaction. After the injection you will need to receive further treatment and observation.

Before taking this medicine

Before using epinephrine, tell your doctor if any past use of Adrenalin caused an allergic reaction to get worse.

Tell your doctor if you have ever had:

Having an allergic reaction while pregnant or nursing could harm both mother and baby. You may need to use epinephrine during pregnancy or while you are breastfeeding. Seek emergency medical attention right away after using the injection.

If possible during an emergency, tell your medical caregivers if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

How should I use Adrenalin?

Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets. Use the medicine exactly as directed.

Epinephrine is injected into the skin or muscle of your outer thigh. In an emergency, this injection can be given through your clothing.

This medicine may come with a "trainer pen." The trainer pen contains no medicine and no needle. It is only for non-emergency use to practice giving yourself an Adrenalin.

Read and follow all Instructions for Use. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you need help.

Do not give this medicine to a child without medical advice.

The auto-injector device is a disposable single-use system. Use an auto-injector only one time.

Do not try to reinsert an auto-injector a second time. If the needle is bent from the first use, it may cause serious injury to your skin.

Seek emergency medical attention after any use of epinephrine. The effects of epinephrine may wear off after 10 or 20 minutes. You will need to receive further treatment and observation.

Also seek emergency medical attention if you accidentally inject yourself while giving epinephrine to another person.

Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light. Do not refrigerate or freeze this medicine, and do not store it in a car. Do not use Adrenalin if it has changed colors or has particles in it.

Do not use if the expiration date on the label has passed. Call your pharmacist for a new prescription.

Do not reuse a needle or syringe. Place them in a puncture-proof "sharps" container and dispose of it following state or local laws. Keep out of the reach of children and pets.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Since epinephrine is used when needed, it does not have a daily dosing schedule.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

Overdose symptoms may include numbness or weakness, severe headache, blurred vision, pounding in your neck or ears, sweating, chills, chest pain, fast or slow heartbeats, severe shortness of breath, or cough with foamy mucus.

What should I avoid while using Adrenalin?

Do not inject epinephrine into a vein or into the muscles of your buttocks, or it may not work as well. Inject it only into the fleshy outer portion of the thigh.

Accidentally injecting epinephrine into your hands or feet may result in a loss of blood flow to those areas, and resulting numbness.

Adrenalin side effects

Before using epinephrine, tell your doctor if any past use of Adrenalin caused an allergic reaction to get worse.

Call your doctor at once if you notice pain, swelling, warmth, redness, or other signs of infection around the area where you gave an injection.

Side effects may be more likely in older adults.

Common side effects may include:

  • breathing problems;

  • fast, irregular, or pounding heartbeats;

  • pale skin, sweating;

  • nausea and vomiting;

  • dizziness;

  • weakness or tremors;

  • headache; or

  • feeling restless, fearful, nervous, anxious, or excited.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect Adrenalin?

Tell your doctor about all your other medicines, especially:

This list is not complete. Other drugs may affect epinephrine, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible drug interactions are listed here.

Does Adrenalin interact with my other drugs?

Enter other medications to view a detailed report.

Frequently asked questions

Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.