For years, those afflicted by serious medical conditions, such as diabetes and severe food allergies, have worn MedicAlert bracelets to alert others to their condition.
Now, tattoos are increasingly being used to mark medical conditions.
According to a report by Canada's CJME News Talk 980, marking medical conditions in such a bold way is becoming increasingly trendy in tattoo shops throughout the country. Lauren Suchan of the Canadian Diabetes Association explained the appeal of medical alert tattoos: "It's an interesting alternative, instead of having the (MedicAlert) bracelet, to just have a cool tattoo."
A recent report in the Canadian Medical Association Journal found that the practice is growing in popularity, with medical alert tattoos covering everything from Do Not Resuscitate to food or drug allergies.
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Suchan says the tattoos are especially trendy among young people. "I would say teenagers mostly, and they are getting tattoos on their wrist to represent their MedicAlert bracelet for their diabetes" she says.
Some are first-time customers, while others are already covered in ink. Jill Cawood, who manages Rites of Passage, a tattoo shop in Saskatoon, says that they've seen at least a dozen requests this year alone.
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