How to use your EpiPen
05
December

By Adem Lewis / in , , , , , , , /


Hello Bobby, how are you? Good thank you. Have you had any further reactions
since the last time I saw you? No, none. That’s very good. Do remember to
avoid what you are allergic to that’s your best prevention
of not having anaphylaxis. Ok we brought you in here to
review your anaphylaxis kit. So you should have two EpiPens
and antihistamines in the kit and your asthma inhaler
if you’re an asthmatic as well. Yeah I’ve got it here in my bag. It’s quite big so I have to
take it everywhere I go. It is quite big but it is very important
that you take it everywhere you go you never know when you’re
going to have an anaphylaxis. If you start to have a lump coming
up in the back of your throat, if you start to feel dizzy and
your breathing gets very noisy which is called wheezing
like asthmatics get, then you need to
use your EpiPen. Yeah, I remember starting to feel faint. I got this funny feeling that something
terrible was going to happen to me. That is called the feeling of doom
and it’s very common in anaphylaxis then you really must
use your EpiPen. If you feel like you need to use your
EpiPen, take into your dominant hand Blue to the sky orange to the thigh. Take the blue cap off, you can go through
all the clothing, it doesn’t matter. In a swinging motion into your
thigh like so (clicking sound) wait until you hear the click and then
count to ten elephants by counting one elephant, two elephant,
three elephant, four elephant. Especially when you have the feeling
of doom, people tend to count (rapidly) one, two three four,
five six, seven, eight, nine, ten so it’s important to put
the elephants in between. Take it out after the ten elephants;
rub the area for ten seconds. You don’t need to worry about the needle;
a shield will come up and guard the needle. If you used an EpiPen you must
go to the A&E department. If you are by yourself you give the
EpiPen first and then call an ambulance. If somebody else is with you they call an
ambulance while you are giving the EpiPen. You must say the word anaphylaxis
or severe allergic reaction that will trigger a faster response. If you have got anaphylaxis the
safest place to be is on the floor. If you can tolerate it lie flat on the floor
and have your legs elevated on the wall. That will help you with the dizziness
and will make you feel better. If you can’t tolerate
it with the asthma sit up and have your legs
on a table or chair. Your legs need to be higher than
your heart for this to work. If you need to get up: don’t. It’s quite likely that if you get up too
quickly that your blood pressure will drop and you will faint and
hurt yourself even more. If you really have to get up – do it
extremely slowly, sit up for a while. If you have the feeling you are getting
dizzy again lie back down again and have your legs elevated. What if my symptoms don’t get any better? If your symptoms don’t get any
better after five to ten minutes and the ambulance hasn’t arrived,
you take your second EpiPen. Again, take the blue cap off,
upper outer part of your thigh until you hear the click (click sound) and then count to ten. Take it out, rub the area for ten seconds. And does that need to be
in the same leg as before? No it can be done in the
other leg it doesn’t matter. When do I take my antihistamine tablets? You can take your antihistamine
tablets before or after the EpiPen. So for example if you have a lump
coming up in the back of your throat and you can’t swallow your own saliva
anymore, you probably can’t swallow a tablet. So then take your EpiPen first, and
if the symptoms have calmed down, then take your antihistamine. However if you’re just developing an itch
and you’re not sure if it is anaphylaxis, take the antihistamines first and then after
five to ten minutes you have the feeling: “actually my throat is tightening
and I’m becoming to get wheezy” then take your EpiPen as well. This is a lot of information;
do you have any more questions? No. When you use an EpiPen, give
them to the ambulance drivers; they will dispose of them safely. They are single use only, so
you can’t reuse them again. When you leave the A&E
department they will either give your new EpiPens or a
prescription for an EpiPen. Make sure you get the new
EpiPens as soon as possible. Once a month I would like
you take your EpiPen out. Look at the expiry date. If they expire within that month go
to your GP and get a new EpiPen. Sometimes the adrenaline turns brown, for
example under the influence of sunlight. If it has turned brown get a
new one from your GP as well and just recall how
to use an EpiPen so if you are in an emergency
situation, you know exactly what to do. Here’s the anaphylaxis
emergency kit leaflet just to remind you of
everything we discussed. You can also go for more
information to the King’s web page as well as the
EpiPen.co.uk webpage. Any more questions? No, thank you. I wish you all the best and I’ll
see you back in a year’s time. Thank you very much Thank you, take care.


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