How To Use Epinephrine Autoinjector - Auvi-Q or EpiPen

Editor: V. Dimov, M.D., Allergist/Immunologist, Assistant Professor at University of Chicago

This 2-minute video shows the Sanofi's new voice guided Auvi-Q epinephrine injector in action:

Start here: How to use EpiPen. Self-injectable epinephrine (SIE) in the form of a device (EpiPen) was first introduced in 1980.

Video instructions on use of the EpiPen (epinephrine/adrenaline) autoinjector for anaphylaxis from the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA):

How To Use an EpiPen video from Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio:

Tips for managing food allergy (MJA, 2004):

- Always carry an EpiPen 2-Pak
- Always read food labels
- Ask questions about food preparation (be aware of the risk of cross-contamination)
- No label/no eat
- No EpiPen/no eat
- Tell friends about a serious food allergy
- Tell friends if feeling unwell, especially after eating

The action plans for food allergy and anaphylaxis include the use of EpiPen as first line of treatment.

Key points:

- There is no cure for food allergies at this time

- 8% of U.S. children under 18 have at least one food allergy

- Epinephrine is the first line life-saving medication in severe food allergic reaction. Always carry an EpiPen with you, and remember these simple memory rules in severe food allergic reaction:

- "No Epi, no eat-y" (always carry an EpiPen with you, don't sit down to eat if you don't have an EpiPen available)

- "If it's more than the skin, the Epi goes in" (only mild hives may respond to antihistamine, for anything else you may need an EpiPen)


How to use Epipen (official video)
Official EpiPen App for iPhone and iPad
Action plans: asthma, food allergy, rhinitis, anaphylaxis
Training of trainers on epinephrine autoinjector use increases correct use from 23.3% to 74.2%
Food allergy and anaphylaxis training - free at
Time epinephrine needs to reach muscle - holding the device in place for 1 second is as effective as 10 seconds. Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, 2011.

Related reading

"Epinephrine is to anaphylaxis as an AED (defibrillator) is to someone suffering cardiac arrest. Life-saving." Forbes, 2012.

Published: 01/29/2011
Updated: 05/12/2012

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