Member Stories

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Sarah wears her MedicAlert bracelet


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Name: Sarah Thompson
Age: 32
Conditions: Complex heart disease, mild asthma, scoliosis
Wears: Single Link Bracelet

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“I would recommend anyone with a lifelong condition to join MedicAlert!"


Sarah is a beautiful young woman who has been living with a complex congenital heart disease and other medical conditions, since childhood:

My medical condition is complicated: not only do I have complex congenital heart disease, I also have scoliosis, which affects my breathing. I have to take all this into consideration daily, without it affecting my life. It also influences holiday destinations, of course.

When I was just starting high school in 1999, my parents wanted me to be more independent, but at the same time they also wanted me to be safe. With this in mind, they decided to buy me a MedicAlert bracelet and this is when I became a member. It's been 20 years since then and I am grateful to my parents for the decision they made in order to keep me safe.

I was lucky enough and I have never needed the MedicAlert until 2 years ago, when I was on holiday in Corfu with my husband.

I sometimes, for no reason, get a very high heart rate that wakes me up in the middle of the night. It can go from normal to 170bpm in a second and sticks at that rate. When I'm in the UK, I can deal with it, as it has happened so many times. It is still very scary waking up with your heart pounding in your chest like you’d been running for hours!

It was the first time I'd had a medical issue abroad, so my husband got me to a local hospital. Nobody could speak English and the only thing we knew how to say in Greek was 'cheers'. Explaining my illness can be tricky even in my own language though, as its very specialised; we only have a few hospitals in the UK that support CHD adults.

I was very scared and my husband was trying to explain that I was unwell. The only solution was calling the MedicAlert emergency line and the fact it is available in over 100 languages (including Greek!) was a life-saver for me! They accessed my online record and explained all my medical details to the Greek doctors, helping them understand what they needed to do in order to help me.

Without my MedicAlert, I honestly think my heart would have given up on me!

I would recommend anyone with a lifelong condition to join MedicAlert! You may never need it, as you may never need house insurance, but you still get it and you feel safer.

That one time you need it, you could be in another country, like me, and doctors have no idea what to do... it could save your life!


“Without my MedicAlert, I honestly think my heart would have given up on me!" 

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