Air travel was once rather easy to do and you could bring food, drink and even medications on board with you with the least resistance. In light of the tragedies on September 11th, security is a lot tighter and now you can no longer carry some of the things on board with you that you once could. However, the U.S. government still will allow you to bring your medications on board with you, which is good news for food allergy sufferers.
Medications like the self-injecting EpiPen which consists of epinephrine can be brought through security at the airport but there are some new regulations regarding drug protocols you should be aware of when you travel.
First of all, when you travel with medication prescribed by a doctor, you need to ensure that it includes a legible label from the pharmacy where it was filled for you. If you have to carry syringes or anything injectible, prescription proof from your doctor and pharmacy is a necessity. Otherwise, you will not be allowed to bring it on board. (This is true for diabetics and other health problems as well that require injectible medications.)
When your medication comes in a box and only the box and not the medication itself is labeled, you will need to store your medication inside the box so that you can take the labeled box with you as proof. In addition, you will to take, as a precaution, a letter from your doctor on his official letterhead that states your medical condition, vital statistics and list of medications. In addition, a letter from the pharmacy stating that the medication prescribed is indeed yours may help as well.
Traveling with medication in a liquid form is a bit trickier, although it is accepted as well through airport security. New travel rules state that any liquids placed in a carry-on bag must be in containers no more than three fluid ounces and all of the containers need to fit in a clear quart-size plastic bag. If your medication is in a bottle larger than three fluid ounces, it is still possible to take it through security. However, you will have to declare the medications at checkpoint and present the proper paperwork as listed above.
If your medication cannot be x-rayed or you do not wish to have it pass through the x-ray machine at checkpoint, you will have to request a visual inspection of the prescription drug. Of course, not all inspectors can visually authenticate medication and therefore, it may be necessary to x-ray the contents. If the medication cannot be x-rayed, a special note from the doctor and pharmacist must accompany it and describe the reason why.
Please note that if your medication comes in a special travel bag, this will not count towards your carry-on baggage limit. Medical supplies are a necessity and an exception to the rules of the airline that state the number of carry-ons and luggage you can take inside the plane cabin. Just be forewarned that you may have to store your medical bag up front with the flight attendants should you not have enough room at your seat area for storage. Before traveling via air, always check with your airline to determine the rules of traveling with prescription medications so you are properly prepared and not caught unaware.