The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics
In Brief: Auvi-Q - A New Epinephrine Auto-Injector
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A new epinephrine auto-injector is available in the US (Auvi-Q – Sanofi; Allerject in Canada) for emergency treatment of anaphylaxis. The new device is about the length and width of a credit card and as thick as a smartphone. It has a retractable needle system and a red safety guard located at the same end as the needle. Activation of the device by removing the outer case initiates an audio voice recording that provides step-by-step instructions and a 5-second countdown during the injection. The shelf-life of the epinephrine in the auto-injector is 18 months; the shelf-life of the battery is longer.

Auvi-Q’s needle length, gauge and injection force are similar to those of EpiPen. A randomized, crossover, bioavailability study found that injection of epinephrine 0.3 mg from Auvi-Q and EpiPen resulted in similar peak epinephrine levels and total epinephrine exposure.1 Like EpiPen, Auvi-Q is available in 2 doses: 0.15 mg (for children weighing 15-30 kg) and 0.3 mg. The cost for 2 Auvi-Qs containing either 0.15 mg or 0.3 mg is $241, compared to $240.66 for an EpiPen Jr or EpiPen 2-Pak.2

CONCLUSIONAuvi-Q is a new, smaller epinephrine auto-injector that provides audio instructions as it is being used. It appears to be more convenient to carry and easier to use than EpiPen.

1. ES Edwards et al. J Allergy Clin Immunol 2012;129:AB179, abstract 678.

2. Wholesale acquisition cost (WAC). Source: $ource® Monthly (Selected from FDB MedKnowledge™) February 5, 2013. Reprinted with permission by FDB, Inc. All rights reserved. ©2013. Actual retail prices may vary.

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