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If they had not heard about it before, by August 2016, most Americans had. EpiPen made headlines because of the actions by its manufacturer, pharmaceutical company Mylan, when it increased the price substantially. EpiPens suddenly became the headline of many newspapers and online articles. The company’s CEO, Heather Bresch, had to defend the company’s business practices in front of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.
An EpiPen is a small, portable device (syringe) called an epinephrine auto-injector. You purchase them pre-filled with the medication epinephrine (adrenaline). It contains enough to help someone who is suffering a severe reaction. While other injectors are on the market, the one most are familiar with is the EpiPen. There are even public service ads telling people how to inject one if they see someone suffering from allergies having a serious reaction or going into anaphylactic shock.
In essence, parents of children with allergies and most allergic results look at an EpiPen as an insurance policy. They hope they never have to use it. They also know it is nearby if an allergy strikes without warning. They, or anyone else, can spring into action and prevent an allergy attack from becoming fatal.
Anyone who suffers from an active allergy needs to carry an EpiPen. This is true whether the individual is a child or an adult. In fact, children require the placement of more than one EpiPen in close proximity. Parents usually try to ensure there is a pen for easy access. Depending upon the stage of life, they will place them:
An EpiPen is as much part of a first aid kit for allergy sufferers as bandages, clean wipes, safety pins and tweezers. It is never a solo purchase. It also requires regular replacement. Like most medications, an EpiPen has a specific expiry date. This tends to be a year.
The answer to this question is simple. If you have an allergy, it can be life threatening. Since you cannot always prevent a severe reaction from occurring, your best defense may be the presence of an EpiPen. Carry it with you everywhere you go and hope you never have to use it.
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