Dr. David Buchholz from Premera Blue Cross on the authorized generic version of EpiPen, created by the same manufacturer, but costing much less.

Many people suffer severe allergic reactions from things like bee stings or from eating particular kinds of foods like shellfish, fruits, or nuts. These reactions can trigger Anaphylactic Shock, causing a swelling of the throat that closes off airways making it difficult to breathe. In a worst-case scenario, this restricts the blood flow to the brain and other parts of the body and can be fatal.

An EpiPen is an auto-injectable device containing Epinephrine, a medication used to treat significant allergic reactions. With a doctor's prescription, people can conveniently carry EpiPens with them, so that in the event an allergic reaction is triggered, it can be treated immediately.

Because of the exorbitant cost of the name-brand device, sometimes as high as $700, public outcry demanded a less expensive generic version, which is now available to the public. Exact in the formula, appearance, and efficacy, the cost of the new generic EpiPen is about half of the brand-name version.

If you have an existing prescription for an EpiPen, your pharmacist can assist you to obtain the generic version, or request a new prescription if your current has elapsed.

If you are on the lookout to see if you or your children may be suffering from allergies, Dr. Buchholz identified itchy red eyes, sneezing, and a clear runny nose as some symptoms. Excema or Itchy red rashes can also be a sign, and often Asthma is triggered by allergies.

If you are concerned about allergies, and they run in the family, Dr. Buchholz suggested going to a Doctor for skin testing to determine what those allergies may be.

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