How EpiPen® works

Lady with injection

How
EpiPen® works

EpiPen® contains epinephrine, a medication that can help decrease your body’s allergic reaction by:

  • Relaxing the muscles in your airways to make breathing easier
  • Helping to reverse the rapid and dangerous decrease in blood pressure
  • Relaxing the muscles in the stomach, intestines, and bladder

EpiPen® is for emergency treatment only and does not replace seeing a healthcare provider or going to the hospital.

Designed to be user-friendly.

how epipen workshow epipen works

EpiPen® is available in two formats:

EpiPen® Packaging

EpiPen Jr® Packaging

Both EpiPen® and EpiPen Jr® are single-use injectable devices that deliver a fixed dose of epinephrine. Your healthcare provider will decide which dose is appropriate for you.

Possible side effects

Like all medicines, EpiPen® may cause side effects.

Side effects may include paleness, dizziness, weakness, shaking, headache, throbbing, restlessness, anxiety, tenseness, and fear.

Stop taking EpiPen® and get immediate medical help if you experience serious side effects such as: difficulty breathing, increased heart rate (pounding heart), irregular or skipped heart beats, chest pain (also called angina), and stroke (symptoms include blurred vision, difficulty speaking, headache, dizziness, and weakness).

Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you experience any unexpected side effects while taking EpiPen® or EpiPen Jr®.

How to store EpiPen®

Storing your EpiPen® Auto-Injector properly can help keep it effective and ready to use in the event of a severe allergic reaction.

When storing EpiPen®, follow these recommendations:

  • Keep your EpiPen® Auto-Injector at room temperature
    • Do not expose to direct sunlight
    • Do not refrigerate or freeze
    • Do not keep EpiPen® in a vehicle during extremely hot or cold weather
  • Keep your EpiPen® Auto-Injector in its carrier tube to protect it from damage; but remember, the carrier tube is not waterproof
  • Keep the blue safety cap, which helps prevent accidental injection, on until you need to use EpiPen®
  • Do not drop
  • Do not keep folded paper instructions or any other objects in the carrier tube with EpiPen®; they may prevent you from retrieving your auto-injector quickly in a severe allergic emergency

Occasionally inspect the EpiPen® solution through the viewing window.
The solution should always be clear.

Replace your EpiPen® Auto-Injector if you see:

  • Discoloured or brown solution
  • Solid particles (also called precipitate)
  • Any signs of leakage or damage to the carrier

Ask your pharmacist or physician about how to properly dispose of an EpiPen® Auto-Injector that’s discoloured, used, or expired. Never try taking the auto-injector apart.

Always replace your EpiPen® Auto-Injector before the expiration date or after using it.

Register for EpiPen®
expiration reminders.