What is a SCRAM Bracelet?

2010-05-24 14:25

During a Los Angeles court hearing this morning, actress Lindsay Lohan was ordered to wear an alcohol-monitoring bracelet, called a SCRAM device. In legal cases involving driving under the influence, or DUI, the use of a SCRAM bracelet is not unusual to ensure abstinence from alcohol either while the case is pending or as a term of probation.

Alcohol Monitoring Systems, Inc patented the SCRAM device, which stands for secure continuous remote alcohol monitor. It is worn on the ankle and measures the subject’s blood alcohol level through perspiration on the skin. The measurement of transdermal alcohol content is converted into a blood alcohol level.

Several studies have shown that there is a good correlation between the amount of alcohol in the bloodstream and that which is contained in the perspiration. Alcohol, specifically ethanol, has an affinity for water, so it is rapidly distributed throughout the body. The body fluids, including perspiration, will therefore contain a level of alcohol as a proportion of that in the blood.

However, the downside is that the amount of alcohol present in perspiration can vary based on a number of factors, such as the thickness of the skin, the amount of sweating, and cutaneous blood flow. Therefore the device cannot be used to accurately measure the amount of alcohol in the bloodstream, only its presence. This makes the bracelet a good screening tool for abstinence, but not a device to judge level of intoxication.

The SCRAM bracelet takes readings every 30 minutes and communicates with a home-placed modem via radio signal. Should the bracelet be tampered with, a monitoring agency will alert authorities.

One problem with the bracelet, however, is that it is non-specific for beverage alcohol. Other types of alcohol, including that from products such as hairsprays or perfumes, may inadvertently be measured by the device.

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Comments

If you work with body shop materials that are chemical based with alcohol what are you supposed to do as this is our livelyhood and how does this bracelet distinguish between the two
Will working in a bar, with alcohol being spilled on sweating hands and feet (in open toed shoes) have an effect on the bracelet. Also alcohol gets spilled on the bracelet. What effect does that have?
I am getting ready to have the SCRAM Bracelet put on this week and have a lot of the same questions. I am blogging about my experience at Scram Bracelet Diaries. As I find the answers to these questions, through my experiences, I will be updating as I go.
Losers need this... is it so hard to NOT drink and drive??? you don't get this for your first dwi/DUI!!! how hard is it to learn your lesson? glad they put whiny drunk drivers in prison after a few now- just sucks hearing them whine that they don't belong there! you know the law- cant do the time... don't do the crime!
Yes, you can get the bracelet for your first offense. Also, not all DUI offense's are your hard core drunks,. You can consume a glass of wine, and blow over the legal limit based on how much you have eaten, your size, and metabolic rate. You can be pulled over for any reason, and be subjected to a road side sobriety test. Just an FYI
Surely you jest. If you weigh 15 pounds maybe. Otherwise, you need to drink quite a lot!