Finally, an alternative to Epipen for Anaphylaxis sufferers

If you or a loved one have a serious allergy (for example to peanuts) you’ll know that until now you only had one choice of adrenaline auto-injectors you could carry with you.

But finally there is an alternative to the ubiquitous Epipen®.

The Epipen, like all other similar devices, provides an instant shot of adrenaline into the body to enable it to quickly combat the life-threatening effects of a severe allergic reaction – a condition known as “anaphylaxis”. These effects include trouble breathing, swollen lips and tongue, severe hives, etc

Without things like the Epipen, it can be very challenging to deliver first aid to people who are having an anaphylactic reaction because at lot of the effects of the allergic reaction are not easily reversible by first aid. Of course CPR and other things can be done to help the person keep breathing while you wait for an ambulance, but the best solution is a shot of adrenaline and then a quick trip to hospital.

There was nothing wrong with the Epipen. It was trusted and proven. It was just that allergy sufferers had no other choice.

So if there were supply issues for example with Epipens many people were forced to hang onto one that was past its use-by date, as their only alternative to not having one at all. This was not ideal.

Now a second brand of adrenaline injecting pen has been approved by the TGA. This second one is called Anapen®. (Find out more here

The Anapen comes in 3 different dosages. The Anapen150 is for children between 15-30 kg in weight. The Anapen300 is for children (and small adults) between 30-60 kg. While the Anapen500 is for anyone over 60kg in body weight.

It has a slightly different method of use to the Epipen but both products come with full instructions and are essentially designed to do the same thing - which is deliver a dose of adrenaline to the body, usually through the upper leg/thigh muscle.

Having a choice between the Epipen and Anapen now means that people with severe allergies and those who care for them, should always be able to get a fresh new auto-injector whenever their current one runs out. So they can carry this protection with them at all times.