Risk of Infection After Splenectomy

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Addenbrooke's Hospital has recently published an updated directive on the in-creased risk of infection to people without a spleen, writes Sandy Maclachlan Our panel of doctors from the four Gaucher's Centres have added their advice. Here is a reminder of the procedures to reduce the risk for those who have had their spleen removed. Seek the advice of your doctor for further information.

An SOS talisman may be worn which records all vaccinations and symptoms in case of an accident. This is a locket with a piece of paper inside which is attached to a necklace or bracelet. They are available from some chemists and jewellery shops or direct from Talman Ltd, 21 Grays Corner, Ley Street, Ilford, Essex IG2 7RQ; tel: 0181 554 5579. Send a stamped addressed envelope for a brochure.

A MedicAlert bracelet or necklace has brief details inscribed on it which you supply eg splenectomy, allergic to penicillin, together with a phone number which a doctor may ring at any time to obtain further information stored on a computer. Prices vary according to whether the jewellery is in stainless steel, silver or gold. To obtain more information, contact the MedicAlert Foundation, 1 Bridge Wharf, 156 Caledonian Road, London N1 9UU; free phone 0800 581 420.

The Dept of Health supplies a card (the size of a credit card) which says 'I have no functioning spleen'. It also has space to write your name, address, telephone number, GP's and hospital's details plus immunisation details. You can possibly get one from your doctor or by writing to the Department of Health, PO Box 410, Wetherby, LS23 7LN or faxing 0990 210 266.

Source: Gaucher's News July 1999

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© Copyright Gaucher's Association 1999