Your MedicAlert ID is amazing! 1) It can speak for you when you cannot and 2) it can spark conversation from people curious enough to ask the reason for your tag when they see it. Win win! And if you are susceptible to a disorder like Malignant Hyperthermia (MH) you are connected to emergency help when needed and you are helping to spread awareness about MH. So, what do you say to people when asked about your ID?
Curious, the staff at Malignant Hyperthermia Association of the United States (MHAUS) asked fans of the MHAUS Facebook Page, “If you wear an ID Tag for Malignant Hyperthermia how long have you had it? Do people who see yours ask you about it?” and received 28 responses.
Responses like, “I wear it but do not get asked much about it, and I feel funny when not wearing it and I am often asked about it, and some people even swapped their ID tag for a tattoo!
Kathleen K. responded- Our son, Geoffrey, wore a MedicAlert bracelet for MH since the age of 3 when he was diagnosed during a simple procedure with anesthesia. He was always asked by friends about why he wore it. I was constantly explaining about MH to parents, teachers and school nurses. No one was aware of MH. He was in gymnastics for ten years then diving in high school and college. Coaches understood wearing the bracelet as necessary, but sometimes it was an issue with judges and officials, no jewelry allowed.
Lisa G.responded- My children wear Medical ID bracelets from MedicAlert. When other children ask about them I explain that it's a special gift from their big brother Vincent who lives in Heaven now; and if it weren't for Vincent we wouldn't know that my other children have this "silent sickness" in their bodies. When an adult asks I share Vincent's story and discuss Malignant Hyperthermia and the "awake" MH symptoms that run in our family.
Ashli K.responded- My husband Geoff wore a bracelet. When I first met him he rarely wore it. When I found out how serious the condition was, I pressed him to wear it all the time. A lot of our friends were able to learn about MH because of Geoff's bracelet. They would ask about his condition, and I really think that the bracelet helped spread awareness (as well as keep him safe!). There were a few times, however, when I was at the doctor with Geoff and nurses would ask about any allergies he had. When we would respond that he was Malignant Hyperthermic, we had a number of nurses respond with a puzzled look and the question, "which is....?" It has always scared me that there are medical professionals out there who are unaware of this life threatening condition. When paramedics responded to my husband last year when he responded to an unknown awake trigger, I again had to explain Malignant Hyperthermia to them and his allergy to general anesthesia. More awareness is definitely necessary to make sure that this condition is further researched.
Read more MHAUS Facebook responses at: http://my.mhaus.org/link.asp?ymlink=1733465.
Highlighted in a few of the responses was how little some healthcare professionals were aware of Malignant Hyperthermia--- yikes, we have more to do! Help us.
Find out about efforts happening now to host one-day MH mini-conferences for healthcare professionals and families in Miami, FL; Rochester, NY; Ontario, Canada; Peoria, IL; and Salt Lake City, Utah--- Or share comments and ideas on how you wouldo build MH awareness on the MHAUS Facebook page or submit this form http://my.mhaus.org/link.asp?ymlink=1732947.
Remember above all, to keep using your amazing MedicAlert ID to spark conversations about Malignant Hyperthermia. Find out more at: http://www.mhaus.org