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Topic: Medical alert bracelet

Forum: Lymphedema — Risks, tips for prevention, and info about products that can address the symptoms of lymphedema.

Posted on: Aug 26, 2012 01:46AM

New-girl wrote:

I bought a sleeve for each arm.  Hate them but whatever.  My BS said I should wear a bracelet too.  12 nodes out of left arm and 4 out of right.  Wear a bracelet on the right arm and take chances on my left?  Anyone found a bracelet that is pretty?  I searched this topic but nothing came up.  Many thanks for helping me out.

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Posts 1 - 22 (22 total)

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Aug 26, 2012 02:01AM ALittleBitBritish wrote:

Try:

www.n-styleid.com/

I got my from here.

- Feb 14 2011 - LCIS / DCIS right breast, March 2011 Left breast ILC one node +, 1/13, BLM, NSM, TE's, Oncotype score 9, No rads, No chemo, Tamox 5 years

Surgery 02/07/2011 Lumpectomy (Right)Surgery 04/21/2011 Mastectomy (Both); Lymph Node Removal: Axillary Lymph Node Dissection (Left); Reconstruction: Tissue expander placement (Both)Hormonal Therapy 05/21/2011 Tamoxifen
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Aug 26, 2012 02:02AM camillegal wrote:

Grt42 I never thought of a bracelet---and it should say how many nodes were taken out of each arm.?or how many positive nodes were taken? No one has ever mentioned bracelets before--I have a card that says I have a port, but that's as far as I go. I've never even see anything like thst except for medic alert bracelets, I guesd that would do, engraving sll the nodes---but they are ugly.

Dx 2007, Stage IV, 24/38 nodes, HER2+
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Aug 26, 2012 02:14AM ALittleBitBritish wrote:

The engraving should specify NO BPs or IVs on which arm, plus emergency contact. Samples can be found online.

The number of nodes removed is irrelevant - any number puts you at risk from LE.

We need to avoid the needles and BP being taken from the arm involved.

- Feb 14 2011 - LCIS / DCIS right breast, March 2011 Left breast ILC one node +, 1/13, BLM, NSM, TE's, Oncotype score 9, No rads, No chemo, Tamox 5 years

Surgery 02/07/2011 Lumpectomy (Right)Surgery 04/21/2011 Mastectomy (Both); Lymph Node Removal: Axillary Lymph Node Dissection (Left); Reconstruction: Tissue expander placement (Both)Hormonal Therapy 05/21/2011 Tamoxifen
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Aug 26, 2012 02:29AM camillegal wrote:

So I would put either arm and that's it. right??\

Dx 2007, Stage IV, 24/38 nodes, HER2+
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Aug 26, 2012 04:08AM, edited Aug 26, 2012 04:08AM by ALittleBitBritish

I would have engraved the word 'both' or 'either' depending on character number spaces allowed - you don't get much room on these bracelets for too much detail, but they tell you how much text can be added.

Or you can take it to be engraved somewhere else if you buy it without engraving.

- Feb 14 2011 - LCIS / DCIS right breast, March 2011 Left breast ILC one node +, 1/13, BLM, NSM, TE's, Oncotype score 9, No rads, No chemo, Tamox 5 years

Surgery 02/07/2011 Lumpectomy (Right)Surgery 04/21/2011 Mastectomy (Both); Lymph Node Removal: Axillary Lymph Node Dissection (Left); Reconstruction: Tissue expander placement (Both)Hormonal Therapy 05/21/2011 Tamoxifen
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Aug 26, 2012 07:18AM, edited Aug 26, 2012 07:19AM by OneBadBoob

You can find some lovely medical alert bracelets at these places

www.laurenshope.com/

www.creativemedicalid.com/shop_

www.hahoriginals.com/content/l...

www.tlcdirect.org/Stainless-St...




Jane - Dance as if no one is watching!!

Dx 7/7/2007, IDC, <1cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Aug 26, 2012 11:58AM camillegal wrote:

Thanks One badboob

Dx 2007, Stage IV, 24/38 nodes, HER2+
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Aug 26, 2012 01:33PM Blessings2011 wrote:

During my entire diagnosis and surgical treatment for IDC  last fall and winter, none of my medical team really stressed the importance of taking LE precautions. In fact, they MINIMIZED the possibility, as I'd only had an SNB on the left side. Later, when I met with the LE specialist at the hospital (at my request) I learned so much more.

The morning after my BMX, a nurse came into my room to take my vitals. We chatted; she shared with me that she had also had a BMX the previous year. Then before I knew it, she had that BP cuff wrapped around my left arm, and was inflating it.

At the same time, we looked at each other and yelled "NOOOO!" She immediately took the cuff off, then got angry because there wasn't a sign posted above my bed prohibiting BPs, blood draws, etc, on the left side. I told her that wasn't my responsibility.

I asked at Kaiser if there could be something in my chart, or on the computer, that would flag my file to reflect the need for LE precautions. I was told that I'd just need to tell everyone myself.

Several months ago, I read in a post here on BCO about free Lymphedema Alert Bands.

I decided what the heck, and sent away for some. They were free, hot pink, and reusable.

I took them with me on Wednesday, when I had my Exchange Surgery. I asked again about the need for LE precautions, and again, was told that I just needed to mention it to everyone.

Well, I discovered that Kaiser has NO warning band for LE, nor do they write anything special on a different bracelet. It all comes down to the scribbled notes by the Pre-OP Nurse, the Plastic Surgeon, the Anesthesiologist, and the OR Nurse.

I whipped out my LE Alert Band, and asked if I could put one on. The nurses thought they were great, and that they should have something like that in stock.

I am hoping I am done with surgery now, but I'm going to order several more bands, just in case. You can get them from

http://www.lymphedema.com/alertband.htm

As for permanent bracelets, there is also a company called RoadID  that makes medical alert bracelets for runners and bicyclists.  http://www.roadid.com/Common/default.aspx

I'm going to check out all the places I've seen so far, and get something permanent.

(But I was SO glad I had my Alert Bands with me during my Exchange Surgery! Sheesh!)

Dx 9/15/2011, IDC, <1cm, Stage Ia, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-Surgery 12/05/2011 Mastectomy (Both); Lymph Node Removal (Left); Reconstruction: Tissue expander placement (Both)Surgery 08/22/2012 Reconstruction: Breast implants (permanent) (Both)Hormonal Therapy 09/05/2012 ArimidexHormonal Therapy 10/22/2013 Femara
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Aug 26, 2012 01:43PM camillegal wrote:

When I was in the hospital last month I was immediately put on the use no arms list--they put a bracelet of their on there and I was glad cuz I wasn't thinking.

Dx 2007, Stage IV, 24/38 nodes, HER2+
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Aug 26, 2012 01:50PM SpecialK wrote:

If hospitalized insist on a paper sign taped above the bed with LE precautions and also find out at pre-op, if staying in the hospital, if they have the bracelets.  If they don't, get your own.  As far as the bracelet goes, before I got mine I called my son who is a fireman and asked him if he knew what lymphedema was, or if his fellow fireman did.  He said no, so I put NO BP/IV/NEEDLES on my bracelet - did not put the work "lymphedema" on it.  In an emergency they are not going to stop and look it up.

I have a regular gold ID bracelet and also have a Road ID one.  Here is a link for an alert sleeve:

http://www.g-sleeve.com./

Dx 9/27/2010, DCIS, Grade 3Dx 9/27/2010, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIb, Grade 3, 2/14 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+Surgery 11/01/2010 Mastectomy (Both); Reconstruction: Tissue expander placement (Both)Surgery 12/06/2010 Lymph Node Removal: Axillary Lymph Node Dissection (Right)Surgery 12/21/2010 Reconstruction (Left)Surgery 01/07/2011 Reconstruction (Left)Surgery 01/21/2011 Reconstruction (Left)Chemotherapy 02/17/2011 carboplatin, TaxotereTargeted Therapy 02/17/2011 HerceptinSurgery 07/20/2011 Reconstruction: Tissue expander placement (Left)Hormonal Therapy 08/01/2011 FemaraSurgery 02/24/2012 Reconstruction: Breast implants (permanent) (Both)Hormonal Therapy 06/20/2012 ArimidexSurgery 12/14/2012 Reconstruction (Both)Hormonal Therapy 07/18/2013 FemaraSurgery 03/07/2014 Reconstruction (Both)Surgery 04/02/2014 Reconstruction: Breast implants (permanent) (Left)
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Aug 26, 2012 03:37PM nibbana wrote:

I got a dog tag styled necklace from American Medical ID. It says on the front, lymphedema risk, arms. Back says no BP cuff or IV in right or left arm.

BMX May 9, 2012, bilateral lymphedema, exposed to TCE and benzene at Marine Corps Base, Camp Lejeune, NC

Dx 4/5/2012, IDC, 3cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/7 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-Hormonal Therapy 06/22/2012 Tamoxifen
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Aug 26, 2012 04:03PM Galsal wrote:

That may well be a good idea SpecialK, since not all know the word.  Thanks for sharing.

Dx 12/14/2011, ILC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 2, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-Surgery 02/10/2012 Mastectomy (Left); Prophylactic Mastectomy (Right)Hormonal Therapy 03/10/2012 TamoxifenSurgery 07/09/2012 Reconstruction: DIEP flap (Both)Hormonal Therapy 10/06/2012 ArimidexHormonal Therapy 12/13/2012 FemaraHormonal Therapy 04/16/2013 AromasinSurgery 07/15/2013 Reconstruction (Both)Surgery 08/16/2013 Reconstruction (Right)Surgery 02/13/2014 Reconstruction: Tissue expander placement (Both)
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Aug 26, 2012 04:46PM New-girl wrote:

Thanks everyone.  Lots of good information.  I wish it was something written clearly on my medical information when I go to the drs but each time I have to remind them no needle sticks and bp on my right arm.  Although left arm had 4 nodes removed, I was told that unless I wanted to get a port, I had to risk the needle stick in that arm.  Any ideas of why after my bmx I woke up with iv's in both arms when that should have been considered risky after removing so many nodes?

Dx 1/19/2012, DCIS, <1cm, Stage I, 0/16 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-Dx 1/19/2012, ILC, Stage I, Grade 2, 0/16 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-Dx 1/19/2012, IDC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 2, 0/16 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-Surgery 02/13/2012 Mastectomy (Both); Lymph Node Removal: Sentinel Lymph Node Dissection (Both); Reconstruction: DIEP flap (Both)Surgery 07/26/2012 Reconstruction: Nipple reconstruction (Both)Surgery 12/14/2012 Reconstruction: DIEP flap, Nipple reconstruction (Both)
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Aug 26, 2012 06:05PM Binney4 wrote:

Because I'm bilateral I use a necklace. The TLC catelog has a nice one (well, maybe it's a bit sweet, but hopefully it does the job):
http://www.tlcdirect.org/Stainless-Steel-Lymphedema-Medical-Alert-Heart-Pendant.html?did=29

When you use those free alert bands and hospital staff comment on them, be sure to tell them how they can order them for their patients. I order them by the box for bc events and nurses' in-service classes--very helpful! For myself, I have two rubber-banded to my insurance ID so anytime I'm at a doctor's office I can put the on. A couple in the glove compartment, in assorted tote bags, and in my "in case of emergency" bag (which also contains a set of arm bandages, my medical history and contacts for doctors, and a couple of packets of hot cocoa mix--all the essentials for an unplanned hospital stay.) Those bracelets are a real gift! If you order some, do send them back a note of thanks--it's ReidSleeve company employees who volunteer to fill those orders. Nice people!Kiss
Binney

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Aug 26, 2012 06:50PM Laural wrote:

If you carry a cell phone on your person, you can add ICE (In case of emergency) #s. It also allows you to add a few lines of medical info, such as Use only right/left arm for BP and IV's. Just one more option and way to communicate info to medical personnel if you are unable to talk. 

The hospital I had surgery at used a bracelet to identify arm not to use, but I still had to remind nurses at times (granted I was on a neuro floor where they were not used to mastectomy patients due to anesthesia/seizure issues, but you have to be your own advocate).

Dx 9/18/11; Stage 1 IDC on left, 1.2 cm. Grade 2, 0/2 nodes positive; Stage 1 ILC on right, 1 cm. Grade 2, 0/13 nodes positive; Acute leukemia as young adult and secondary MDS ever since. Through it all, God is faithful.

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Aug 26, 2012 06:59PM ruthbru wrote:

Beautiful medical ID bracelets at http://www.creativemedicalid.com/ (I frequently get compliments on mine as a piece of jewelry!)

They give you information on how to measure & inscription suggestions for various conditions, mine says: "No IV, BP, needles in left arm"

"Invisible threads are the strongest ties." Friedrich Nietzsche

Dx 2/2007, Stage IIa, Grade 3, 0/11 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-
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Feb 14, 2014 09:11AM Mommyathome wrote:

I am in the process of purchasing a medical alert bracelet due to the fact that I was diagnosed with breadt cancer and had nodes taken out. My question is: if the bracelet is not surgical stainless steel will the bracelet rust, tarnish, etc with contact with water? I have seen some beautiful ones with beads etc and I contacted the company and he suggested not wearing it in the shower or swimming pool but washing your hands with it on should be fine.. I was hoping to get one that I could leave on regardless of what activity I'm doing. Any thoughts, suggestions, comments about experiences you've had are welcome!!! Thanks!

Dx 11/2013Dx 12/4/2013, LCISDx 12/4/2013, DCIS, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 2, ER+/PR+Surgery 11/20/2013 Lumpectomy (Left)Surgery 01/29/2014 Mastectomy (Left); Prophylactic Mastectomy (Right); Reconstruction: Tissue expander placement (Both)
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Feb 14, 2014 09:16AM ruthbru wrote:

I don't wear mine in the shower, pool etc. I never thought of leaving in on when in water, and I don't think it would hold up. I would be interested in what others have to say too.

"Invisible threads are the strongest ties." Friedrich Nietzsche

Dx 2/2007, Stage IIa, Grade 3, 0/11 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-
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Feb 15, 2014 04:00AM, edited Feb 15, 2014 06:25AM by 2nd_time_around

I had a stainless steel one for several years that was indestructible, only took it off when necessary. Not a fashion statement, but served the purpose. Don't know what happened to it, it disappeared about my 2nd mx. I should probably go back to wearing one. Thinking of checking into this again.

It was also my LE detector: I could usually put a couple fingers between wrist and bracelet, when LE flared it was a big snug. 

**AKA 2TA ** Any day I wake up, it's a good day. ~ ~ "You don't know strength until strength is the only choice you have." (Author unknown)..... Yes, this is my 2nd occurrence, not recurrence (different BC's), 1st in 1996, 2nd in 2012

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Feb 15, 2014 04:42AM sherry67 wrote:

I bought my medical alert bracelet through Lauren's Hope on there web site ...they beautiful ones that are for women only and you would never no it was a medical alert bracket.  You can wear it in the shower except for pools and jacuzzis ...I get a lot of complements about the one I have...on this particular site you are able to choose and make the bracelet you want..I have given many of my patients this site for different issues and they were very appreciated ...sherry

Dx 2010, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIb, Grade 3, 11/23 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+Hormonal Therapy TamoxifenTargeted Therapy 03/04/2011 HerceptinChemotherapy 03/04/2011 Abraxane, carboplatinSurgery 07/28/2011 Mastectomy (Both); Lymph Node Removal: Axillary Lymph Node Dissection (Right); Reconstruction: Tissue expander placement (Both)Chemotherapy 09/04/2011 Adriamycin, CytoxanRadiation Therapy 11/22/2011 ExternalSurgery 08/20/2012 Prophylactic Ovary Removal (Both)Surgery 02/15/2013 Reconstruction: Breast implants (permanent) (Both)Surgery 07/09/2013 Reconstruction: Breast implants (permanent) (Both)
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Feb 15, 2014 09:59AM Binney4 wrote:

sherry, have any of the patients who wear these needed them (as in a medical emergency)? Did they work for them? The advice is that a more medical-looking bracelet is more likely to be noticed by emergency personnel. I really don't know how EMTs and ER personnel are taught to look for medical jewelry, or if it is overlooked even when it looks "medical," so I'd love some anecdotal stories about whether these things help or not in an emergency.

On the other hand, when I had LE in only one arm (I'm now bilateral) I wore a bracelet to remind MYSELF not to let them use that arm!

Be well!
Binney

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Feb 15, 2014 03:50PM sherry67 wrote:

Binney4,

Mine looks like a bracelet until you turn it around and it has the medical alert shield and I had my name/BMX-R-Limb restrictions plus my allergies inscribed. So god forbid something happens to me just anything they would be aware...  If you go to the site you will be impressed...

Dx 2010, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIb, Grade 3, 11/23 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+Hormonal Therapy TamoxifenTargeted Therapy 03/04/2011 HerceptinChemotherapy 03/04/2011 Abraxane, carboplatinSurgery 07/28/2011 Mastectomy (Both); Lymph Node Removal: Axillary Lymph Node Dissection (Right); Reconstruction: Tissue expander placement (Both)Chemotherapy 09/04/2011 Adriamycin, CytoxanRadiation Therapy 11/22/2011 ExternalSurgery 08/20/2012 Prophylactic Ovary Removal (Both)Surgery 02/15/2013 Reconstruction: Breast implants (permanent) (Both)Surgery 07/09/2013 Reconstruction: Breast implants (permanent) (Both)