Date of Award
Anaphylaxis is a life-threatening condition caused by the body’s overreaction to a certain allergen. The most widely accepted treatment for this condition is immediate administration of epinephrine, a hormone secreted by the adrenal glands that initiates the body’s fight or flight response, through an intramuscular injection. In most cases, patients that experience anaphylaxis are prescribed an epinephrine auto-injector to carry with them at all times which contains a single dose of epinephrine. Though these devices have been widely accepted for many years, there are many problems caused by their design and the lack of training that their users receive. The five current device designs on the market do not have an easily understood mechanism of action and can be difficult to use for small, weak patients. Patients also have a lack of confidence when they use the device because they do not know how to use it correctly, which often leads to delayed or no use. This can have fatal results. For this reason, a group of biomedical engineering students decided to develop a self-explanatory, easy to use device that can allow for quick, simple administration of epinephrine in the event of anaphylaxis. Our device contains a suction component that removes the need for excessive force to administer the drug. This suction is activated by a sliding mechanism that simultaneously creates the vacuum and activates the device to administer the drug. Along with the device, a detailed pamphlet and video will be included instructing the user on when and how to use the device. The vision for this device and its training involves pushing to have legislation passed across the United States requiring both schools and restaurants to have epinephrine auto-injectors on hand and training the staff in these locations on proper device use.
Myers, Jennifer Ansley, "Improving the Efficacy of Epinephrine Delivery for Anaphylaxis Through Development of a Novel Auto-Injector Device and Increased User Education" (2021). Honors Theses. 1668.
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