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Does Your Medical Alert Bracelet Keep Breaking – Some Patients are now Getting Tattoos…

Posted May 18 2009 10:44pm

There’s another alternative now to the bracelets, well that is if you want a tattoo.  I guess there’s no problem losing it and the article here states how the process is a bit different at times than a normal tattoo, as those with diabetes could have healing issues.  The gentleman quoted in this image article has also created tattoos for those who are HIV positive.  Obviously the use would be for permanent conditions and the tattoo parlor used for such need to be licensed and clean.  BD 

Increasing numbers of people who have serious medical conditions are turning to tattooing to identify themselves on the chance a health emergency leaves them unable to communicate.

"Like it or not, a lot of people are resorting to this way of medical identification," said Saleh Aldasouqi, a diabetes expert from Cape Girardeau, Mo.

Aldasouqi first met a patient with a medical tattoo last year when Illinois correctional officer Todd Walsh, who has had Type 1 diabetes since childhood, came for care.

Walsh, 37, sports on his wrist a black and red six-pointed star often seen on ambulances. The word "diabetic" is inscribed below it.

Walsh has had several episodes of potentially life-threatening low blood sugar, which can cause disorientation and even unconsciousness. He had worn medical alert bracelets over the years, but he says they often broke and the cost was adding up. "This is a more permanent solution," he says.  Now, he's urging physicians to develop guidelines for patients outlining who is qualified to get one (some diabetics have wound-healing problems), and how to find a licensed tattoo artist.

When medical bracelets aren't enough: Tattoos | Freep.com | Detroit Free Press

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