The Scary Tattoo Danger You Probably Don't Know About

tattoo skin problemsIf you're thinking of getting some new ink, you may want to read this. While everyone has heard horror stories about tattoo-related illnesses and infections, most often people are quick to blame the tattoo parlor. But a new study conducted by NYU Langone Medical Center suggests it may have a lot more to do with your skin's reaction to the shade of ink you've selected.  


According to the research, published in the June issue of the journal Contact Dermatitis, approximately 1 in 10 individuals who gets a tattoo encounters some kind of irritation such as swelling, redness, itching, and infection as a result of the ink and your body's immune system.

No minor inconvenience, those symptoms can last from four months to several years, the study indicates. Yikes. Surprisingly, the longest-lasting issues are associated with shades of red and black ink. (Those seem among the most common, too, don't they?) 

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Study lead and Assistant Professor at the Ronald O. Perelman Department of Dermatology Marie C. Leger MD, PhD, told Yahoo Health that she plans to complete a larger survey in the hope of determining which tattoo dye components are linked to these adverse reactions.

That's good news those who love to adorn their bodies with a bit of art but don't want to have to worry about a potential illness or skin irritation.

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If you've recently gotten a tattoo and experience any of the symptoms listed above, Leger says it's a good idea to consult your doctor who may prescribe topical ointments to relieve itching. Oral steroids are used to treat more serious issues. And if neither of those options works, Leger says removing the tattoo can be your best bet. 

Have you ever had an adverse reaction after getting a tattoo? Will this news make you think twice before getting inked?


Image © Bryan Smith/ZUMA Press/Corbis

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