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Medical Measurement Tattoo

For monitoring swollen ankles
  (+3)
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Swollen ankles can be an early warning symptom of a lot of medical conditions (e.g, congestive heart failure) but it comes on gradually. At risk patients could have several dots tattooed a centimetre apart around their ankle. This could be reliably and more quickly measured than wrapping a tape measure around the ankle - just measure the distance between the dots on a regular basis and record trends. Purposefully low tech.

There are a LOT of variations of “medical tattoo” ideas. I’d be surprised if this exact application isn’t baked already. But I can’t find prior art - can you?

kdf, Dec 27 2020

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       Needs to be combined with some kind of fixed length implant or bracelet so the measurement can be read instantly
pocmloc, Dec 28 2020
  

       Why not just knock in a couple of nails ? Quicker and cheaper.   

       [+]
8th of 7, Dec 28 2020
  

       Pocmloc, my first thought *was* some kind bracelet actively taking measurements. Decided that was an unnecessary complication.   

       This idea came to me after my last doctor’s visit. I have a leaky heart valve that causes no problem or overt symptoms - but may worsen for years before I need to do anything about it. I realize one monitoring approach would be to take it out, put it in a jar to keep an eye on it. But that too seems an unnecessary complication - so for now I put up with echocardiograms twice a year and trying to answer silly questions like “have you noticed any swelling in your ankles?”
kdf, Dec 28 2020
  

       How fine a line can be inscribed using tattooing ? Is there enough definition for a barcode ?   

       <later>   

       Apparently, yes. Barcode tattoos are very much a thing.   

       </later>   

       If a barcode was embedded, then it could be read with a regular laser/LED scanner, and if it becomes so distorted that it can't be read then that's a warning indication.   

       It could be tattooed using UV ink, so it's not even visible in most lighting conditions.   

       Alternatively, the datum points could be subtly embedded in some sort of decorative design, perhaps by suing different colours, or again UV-fluorescent inks.
8th of 7, Dec 28 2020
  

       If you have swollen ankles, you'll know. A tattoo is not needed.
tatterdemalion, Dec 28 2020
  
      
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