Life saving injection in short supply

Dubai pharmacies say Epipen device unavailable for many months
Dubai, Jumana Khamis, Staff Reporter

A worldwide shortage of life saving injection Epipen has also affected its availability in Dubai Pharmacists told Gulf news

Gulf News visited and contacted over 15 pharmacies requesting both junior and adult Epipen injections over a period of three months .The Pharmacies said the injection over a period of three months .The pharmacies said the injection is “ out of stock” and unavailable for many months.

The Epipen injection is an auto-injector device, issued to people who suffer from severe allergies as a precautionary tool, which is recommended to be carried with them at all times in case of a reaction.

The standard adult device issued for adults contains 0.3mg of epinephrine(300mcg of adrenalin) and is intended for patients who weigh 30kg or more ,while the junior device contains 0.15mg of epinephrine (150mcg of adrenalin) for patients who weigh 15-30 kg.

Life pharmacy with over a dozen branches in Dubai, said the injection was not available in any of their branches.

“sorry mam we have not received stock of the injection for a long time .i can see if it’s possible to find one for you it’s a problem with the supplier, “one pharmacist at life told Gulf News.

Another pharmacist said the injection is available in their warehouses and could be ordered if needed.


Commenting on the shortage of Epipen injection s(above)worldwide .Dr Arun Sharma a Dubai Neuro physician referred to the FDA’recent announcement advising patients to use their Epipen device s upto four months past their expiration date. He pointed out the sole purpose of Epipen is that it can be easily transported and carried by people who have identified serious allergic reactions.

“If someone ingests a food they are severely allergic to they would suffer from an anaphylactic reaction, which can be life threatening and having the Epipen would not only save them from rushing to the hospital , but also save their life .” he said .

Common symptoms of allergic reaction can include rashes, swelling of the tongue, lips and eyes, scratchy throat, and watery eyes to more serious symptoms such as swelling of the tongue and larynx and in extreme cases lowering of blood pressure and stoppage of the heart.