They do not need to be used when the only symptoms are hives or swelling, even if it involves the face.
There are currently three adrenaline auto-injectors on the market. They all contain exactly the same medication. They are made by different manufacturers and work in slightly different ways.
The dose depends on how old your child is.
- 0.5mg for adults/children >12 years
- 0.3mg for children 6 – 12 years
- 0.15mg for children <6 years
The Department of Health now recommend that all patients are prescribed with two adrenaline auto-injectors, which should be available at all times. The North West Paediatric Allergy Network recommend that two adrenaline auto-injectors are prescribed and are carried in an allergy treatment pack and kept with the child. This is in preference to having replicate packs at different sites, which may get lost or be out of date. It is uncommon to need more than one adrenaline injection to treat an allergic reaction. The most common reason for needing an extra auto-injector is failure to use it in a timely and effective manner. Thus all carers should receive adequate training and should have access to a trainer pen to practice with.
Legislation in the UK now allows schools to purchase extra auto-injectors. These supplement, but do not replace the need for children to have their own pens and consent to be documented allowing their use.