The immune system can react quite aggressively to an allergic reaction. Anaphylaxis, a potentially fatal reaction, can happen when an allergy is severe. Shock, a reduction in blood pressure, and breathing difficulties can all result from anaphylaxis. Sometimes, there may be a fatality. Adrenaline, often known as epinephrine, is a medication that can lessen or halt an allergic response. A tool with a syringe and needle that can provide a single dosage of epinephrine is known as an epinephrine auto-injector. These and other commercial brand names include EpiPen®, Auvi-Q®, and Allerject®.
If a workplace decides to make an epinephrine auto-injector available, what should they do?
It is advised that an employer seek legal advice before deciding to provide additional first aid measures (such as over-the-counter medications, oxygen administration, use of epinephrine auto-injectors, naloxone, etc.) so they are aware of any liability concerns and can check with the local authority in charge of health and safety. For instance, it is not advised to distribute OTC drugs in several jurisdictions (although an individual who can purchase using a vending machine may be permissible). Distribution of over-the-counter medicines may be legal in some other countries if certain conditions are met (including the appropriate training of first aid personnel).
What anaphylactic symptoms and signs are there?
The majority of the time, symptoms appear minutes after exposure, although they can occasionally appear up to 30 minutes later. One to eight hours following the initial reaction, a second reaction of equivalent severity may occur. Several different signs and symptoms, such as: pale or flushed skin Hives, itching, or redness are a few other skin alterations. eyelid swelling and wet, itching eyes throat or tongue irritation or swelling throat feeling as if a lump is developing airway obstruction or constriction that results in wheezing or breathing difficulties Strong or erratic pulse quick heartbeat fainting or vertigo diarrhea, vomiting, or nauseous a sense of impending disaster Common triggers include: certain medicines specific foods insect stings or bites (venom) a few substances, items, or products
When are allergic or anaphylactic reactions a work-related issue?
Products in the workplace could cause reactions in some persons. Latex, bee stings, and certain chemicals are a few examples of workplace allergies (e.g., diisocyanates). When an allergenic agent is known, employers might take precautions to limit exposure (e.g., elimination, substitution). For instance, if a worker outside who is allergic to bug stings gets stung, they should get help from a coworker and keep an epinephrine auto-injector handy. Working alone or at heights are two potential hazards that could exacerbate the severity of the issue (for example, if the individual responds so violently that they are unable to administer themselves an injection or if they faint from the response and fall from a ladder).
What can be done at work?
When enterprises elect to supply an epinephrine auto-injector, workplaces need to have first responders who are well trained in CPR (CPR). Employers must have policies and procedures in place that were created in collaboration with the committee or representative for health and safety. During the incident response, every person responding to a problem needs to be aware of their roles and responsibilities. People who administer epinephrine should be trained to recognize the symptoms of an allergic reaction and know what to do. It is advised that these people receive first aid instruction, including cardio pulmonary resuscitation (CPR). People who are aware of the possibility of anaphylaxis should let their employer know that their doctor has prescribed an epinephrine auto-injector. Along with displaying their allergies and the position of their injector, they should also wear a medic alert bracelet or necklace. Permission should be sought before supplying first aid personnel with details about a worker who may experience a severe response, their allergy, and the locations of the auto-injectors. Employees should receive training on the risks of anaphylaxis, how to spot and handle the symptoms, and the best ways to avoid known allergens. It is important to encourage basic allergy control practices including handwashing, sanitizing work surfaces, and handling and/or preparing food properly. Employees should be instructed on how to call for assistance and identify the warning signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction. The individual should get instruction on how to correctly use an epinephrine auto-injector before being given permission to use the injector. The allergic person should always have an auto-injector on them. Have a second or third auto-injector ready in a secure location that is yet easily accessible if that isn't possible (e.g., can be in a drawer, but not in a locked drawer with limited keys). Extreme temperatures shouldn't be used to keep epinephrine (not too cold or too hot). Since epinephrine is light-sensitive, it should be kept in the specified container. Expired epinephrine auto-injectors (about 18 months). Make sure there is always a working injector available and check the expiration date. After use, the epinephrine auto-injector needs to be replaced. It might not be possible for the person to inject the medicine themselves during a reaction. Make that your immediate coworkers have received the necessary training, are aware of the location of the auto-injector, and can identify response symptoms. Coworkers should know how to contact emergency responders from outside the company. It could be required to reassign that person to other responsibilities in some circumstances where exposure to an allergy is conceivable. Consider delegating that person to different tasks outside of the vicinity of a hive or nest, for instance, if they have a severe sensitivity to bee or wasp stings (especially if the work involves disturbing the hive or nest). Alternatively, if food is served at work (or if there is a social ""potluck"" event), make careful to alert attendees in advance of any food allergies, prevent cross-contamination, and clearly label all meals with their components.
When would you use an auto-injector for epinephrine?
Using an epinephrine auto-injector might be appropriate if the person indicates they are having a severe allergic response or if you fear they are. If it turns out that a person is not experiencing an allergic reaction, administering a single injection won't hurt them.
Which first aid procedures are suitable for anaphylaxis?
Be quick. Before the patient's symptoms get worse, provide the epinephrine injection right away. For safe use, adhere to the manufacturer's instructions. The auto-injector is often pressed against the subject's thigh to provide the medication. The injection could finish in around 10 seconds. Request immediate medical help. There is a chance that the symptoms will come back, therefore a doctor should keep an eye on the patient's progress. While you wait for emergency help, keep an eye on the person's health. If you are certified to do so, start CPR if the person's breathing or heart stops. To avoid harm in the event that they pass out and fall, have them lie down. Enclose the person in a blanket and loosen any restrictive garments. Don't provide them with any beverages. Keep an eye out for bleeding or vomit. Turning a person to their side may help to prevent choking. Put the used injector back into the storage tube and close the cap of the tube. Give the injector to the emergency responders or bring it with you to the hospital. Make a note of what time you gave the injection. When using an injection method, be aware of the hazards and risks associated with needlestick injury and the transmission of infections. In most cases, the person will feel the epinephrine working right away. They may also feel a rapid heartbeat and nervousness. Always call for first aid or medical assistance. Symptoms can return or get worse after giving the injection. It may be necessary to administer a second injection, especially if the person does not respond to the first dose within 5 minutes, and if medical emergency responders have not arrived to the location."""