I just returned from the hospital where my 17 year old daughter was admitted for stabilization/observation following an accidental ingestion of peanut contaminated food. Her reaction was severe due to time lost in not being able to get epinephrine from the new Epi-pen design. When we picked up a new epi-pen last month, we noted a new design - oblong canister and orange tip. What we failed to understand was the increased difficulty in using this new injector. The old auto-injectors could be administered with a firm press against the outside of the thigh. These new injectors require a wide swing and a holding push against the thigh... my daughter finally figured it out (precious minutes flew by) but then, did not know that the orange safety shield would push back to cover the needle. She was unable to receive the full dose. PLEASE BE AWARE OF THIS DRAMATIC DESIGN CHANGE!!!! Review the literature and use the new trainer. Personally, I hate the design. It is a lot more complicated and more difficult to administer this life saving drug.
By Mach5AR on Jun 2, 2010
This is very disconcerting to know as we also have just recently received the new Epi-Pen and Epi-Pen Jrs for myself and my twin boys. We have worked some with the new trainer, but did not realize that it will require actions like you said of a wide swing and holding push to correctly administer the medication. If we will have to do it that way, I thank you for the heads up. It means re-instructing those previously trained to administer the Epi-Pen or Epi-Pen Jr on this new design, as they will not be aware of any changes until the moment of use like your daughter was. A very scary situation, especially when every second counts.
By MomMFT on Jun 3, 2010
My daughter was diagnosed with PA at age 3. She has had NO problems with self-administering the old injector. The problem on this new one is the orange safety shield on the new design. In order to expose the needle, the pressure of the thigh is the only thing that retracts the shield and keeps it that way (hence the need for a wide swing - see the video on the epi-pen website.) According to my daughter, the spring loaded shield pushes back on the thigh, "wanting" to recover the needle, which is no longer spring-loaded. The needle was literally pulled back out of her thigh as the orange shield wanted to close itself. Consequently, she 1)lost precious seconds trying to figure out how to get the needle into her thigh and then, 2)did not get a full dose and had a more severe reaction. I really would like to know if others are having this issue and would like to see if Dey Pharma would reconsider going back to the old design. Who cares if this new design looks "cooler" if it doesn't work as well! I'm a little panicked that others may be in a similar situation as with my daughter, with a potentially worse outcome.
By cmvervais on Jun 5, 2010
Thanks for posting. My daughter was diagnosed a couple months ago, and it turns out we have one old design and one new design. I had no idea there was a difference. I watched the video on the Epipen website and feel more prepared now.
By cervonil on Jun 7, 2010
this totally horrifies me, as I had to use his epi pen last week - old version. I do have one pack of the new version and as if I wasn't already terrified of using it! I looked on there site to contact the company and they didn't have a contact us section.
By MomMFT on Jun 12, 2010
I filed a formal complaint with the FDA at Medwatch and hope that everyone gets word of the new way to administer this. The wide swing that is needed is going to take some getting used to.
By mudgiemen on Jun 13, 2010
thank you very much for the information. we recently filled our annual prescription and I had no idea that there was a difference except the look of it. I am figuring it out and calling the DR in morning for a new trainer. Sorry about your daughter, but glad that she is okay. My 11 yr old son has never had a second reaction, only the inital incident, but we frequently test him, ourseves and family with the trainer.
By Ben_mom on Jun 15, 2010
I am new to PA with my 3 year old son. I was nervous about not knowing how to use the EPI pen if it's needed and thought I understood but no one has told me about the difficulty with the orange sheild and having to use a wide swing. I am going to watch the video on the website. It makes me nervous about others taking care of my son such as daycare providers who have said they know how as they have many PA children in their facility. But I'm not sure they are aware of this change.
By caking on Jul 6, 2010
Thank you for sharing this information. Both my son and I are due for new epipens this summer.
By Mrsdocrse on Jul 6, 2010
Thank you for sharing this info. I am due for a new one. I was aware that the epi design has changed. However, I was not aware that the way to use it changed.
By MomMFT on Jul 6, 2010
Here is the link to the video instructions for the new design. PRACTICE this and have your allergic children do the same. The method for administration is VERY different, and for those familiar with the old design, the new design administration is somewhat violent, in my opinion. It will take some getting used to: http://www.epipen.com/page/how-to-use-epipen
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