Tattoo Inks Harbours 22 Skin Diseases —Research


Those who are currently toying with the idea of having their bodies tattooed should have a rethink as a recent report has shown that the inks used for designing tattoos do more harm than good.

According to the report released in the New England Journal of Medicine, tattoo ink have now been found to carry harmful bacteria which causes 22 different skin infections, including those related to tuberculosis and leprosy.

Some of these diseases, according to the report, have been discovered in many citizens of the United States of America and they believe the diseases could be spreading around the world as more people go for tattoos.

The research, which report was released this week, began after a cluster of skin infections were led back to one tattoo artist in the US.some months ago.

The local public health officials took the usual step of investigating the artist’s hygiene practices, but found that all of his equipment and methods were clean.

The offending pathogen in the disease outbreak was identified as Mycobacterium chelonae, a relative of the bacteria behind tuberculosis and leprosy that is commonly found in tap water.

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The research said though M. chelonae is usually harmless to people with normal immune systems, when it is escorted beneath the skin by a tattoo needle, it could be disastrous requiring strong antibiotic regimens and sometimes surgery to eradicate.

The craze for tattoos have increased tremendously in Nigeria as  more young people including men and women now adorn different and sexy designs on different parts of their bodies.

However, the danger in having your body tattooed in Nigeria is that while the designers in the developed countries ensure clean operational environment, the reverse is often the case in Nigeria as the majority of the local tattoo designers operate from ghettos, slums and unclean environments.

Many of the operators earing a living from the dangerous beauty business in the country often operate in unhygenic conditions, thus makes it  more risky to have your body tattoed here than in the advanced world.

—Eromosele Ebhomele