Travelling with DBS

Does anyone with DBS have any experience with Airport Scanners?



I'm going to reply to my own post, as I had no response.
I've just returned from Portugal and I have now got first hand experience of the security systems in both Newcastle airport and Faro airport regarding Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS). In Newcastle they had an up to date ATR (Automatic Threat Recognition) a security scanner which collects data from millimetre waves which emit very low power electromagnetic radiation many times lower than that emitted by mobile phones. There are no known health risks associated with this. Faro, on the other hand, had a normal metal detection scanner, which you pass through and which can affect any metal in your body, including pacemakers and stimulation devices implanted the chest wall.
Being concerned about my DBS being turned off by scanners, I had a letter from my Parkinson's consultant but I also devised my own Medical Alert Card, credit card size, which worked a treat. I even translated one into Portuguese, so in Faro, where there was no ATR scanner, I by passed the normal scanner and was patted down instead. I didn't have to say a word at either airport, I just showed them the card.
i can't upload an image of the card but the front was in red and white, with the medical alert logo in the centre, above that was,
" MEDICAL ALERT - DBS" to the left of the logo was "No MRI  No ECG" to the right of the logo "No Diathermy.  No EEG" and to the bottom "Avoid Airport Scanners"
The back of the card read
"I Have DBS, (a stimulation device implanted in my brain) and a Neurotransmitter Pacemaker implanted in the right side of my chest. I have Parkinson's Disease. It can make me move more slowly and have difficulty standing or speaking. I am NOT INTOXICATED"

I'll try to upload the card, but if anyone with DBS wants any more information, I'm only too happy to help.


Hi Lilac, I too have a card in case we decide to go abroad.  Do you have a remote control for your battery ?  I do, just in case I annoy the wife and she decides to switch me off !!  Seriously though if you have one you should carry it with you when abroad in case of it accidentally being turned off.

Hi cruisecontroller,

Where did you get your card from? Yes I have got a remote I take with me almost everywhere. You never know!!!

Thanks for your advice.


Lilac, I got mine from the Consultant at the hospital, ask yours for one, you can request one through his/her Secretary and they should either send it to you or give it to you at your next appointment.

Thanks Cruisecontroler,

i've mentioned it before to the specialist sister with no response, but I'll certainly mention it again.