Is Your Medical Alert Pendant Safe?

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Updated: May 11, 2018


Medical Alert Pendant

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In a 2009 article posted on, Philips Lifeline issued a safety notice to its subscribers alerting them of a potential risk of wearing pendant style medical alert buttons.   According to the article, Philips Lifeline states that there have been reports of serious injury by some users of limited mobility, as their medical alert pendant can become entangled more easily in bed rails, and similar items.

So how many people really give thought to the safety choices involved in choosing the proper medical alert button.  I’m sure not many.  Most choices are simply made with comfort in mind first, easy of operation second, and aesthetics third (not necessarily in that order).

So if you have limited mobility, it would appear that you should have concern when bending over a sink and getting your medical alert pendant hooked on the faucet spout.  Or maybe getting it caught on a walker or wheelchair, or even a pet’s paw could innocently get entangled in the medical alert pendant and cause injury.  But what if you don’t have limited mobility concerns?  Should you still have to consider the possibility of entanglement?  The answer is most certainly “yes,” and here’s why.

Although you may have enough strength to unhook yourself from a doorknob or get your cat’s paw untangled, you may not be able to easily remove a tangled power drill or power  screwdriver.  Or maybe your working in the kitchen with a blender and lean in a little too far and suddenly you can’t turn off the power switch and suffer injury in that way.

Now our intent here is not to scare you away from using a medical alert pendant, but just to have you think a little more about your particular physical condition, daily activities, and hobbies.  Medical alert pendants have a clear advantage:  they can be used by either hand in an emergency situation.  That can be a real life saving device if one of your hands becomes injured, or your arthritis handicaps you.

Medical Alert Button Options

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So what are your other options? They typically include the wrist button (or bracelet) or belt-clip button.  Not all companies carry all models and some make you choose before you order.  There are companies such as LifeStation, that ships you one button that can be easily converted to all three options.    That’s good for you because you can easily change your button style, at will.   You may not really know how you will wear your emergency button when you first order a system, but it would be nice to know that if the medical alert pendant wasn’t the right choice for that moment’s activities, you have two more options right at your fingertips.