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How can getting a tattoo cause infections?

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Your tattoo can become infected for several reasons, including the use of contaminated tools or ink. This is why it’s important to find an artist and a facility you trust.

Dirty tools can pass bacterial infections like staph and impetigo, and in rare cases, serious diseases like HIV and hepatitis, from person to person.

From: Help! My Tattoo Has Problems WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

American Academy of Dermatology: “Caring for tattooed skin,” “Dermatologist warns consumers about complications linked to newer tattoo inks.”

DermNet New Zealand: “Tattoo-associated skin reactions.”

FDA: “Think Before You Ink: Are Tattoos Safe?”

The New England Journal of Medicine: “Tattoo Ink -- Related Infections -- Awareness, Diagnosis, Reporting, and Prevention.”

HealthGuidance: “Tattoo Ink Poisoning Symptoms.”

San Mateo County Health System: “Tattoo Aftercare.”

Mayo Clinic: “Tattoos and Piercings.”

Free Tattoo Designs: “Tattoo Care.”

Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Global Open: “Squamous-cell Carcinoma Arises in Red Parts of Multicolored Tattoo within Months.”

Reviewed by Stephanie S. Gardner on March 04, 2019

SOURCES:

American Academy of Dermatology: “Caring for tattooed skin,” “Dermatologist warns consumers about complications linked to newer tattoo inks.”

DermNet New Zealand: “Tattoo-associated skin reactions.”

FDA: “Think Before You Ink: Are Tattoos Safe?”

The New England Journal of Medicine: “Tattoo Ink -- Related Infections -- Awareness, Diagnosis, Reporting, and Prevention.”

HealthGuidance: “Tattoo Ink Poisoning Symptoms.”

San Mateo County Health System: “Tattoo Aftercare.”

Mayo Clinic: “Tattoos and Piercings.”

Free Tattoo Designs: “Tattoo Care.”

Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Global Open: “Squamous-cell Carcinoma Arises in Red Parts of Multicolored Tattoo within Months.”

Reviewed by Stephanie S. Gardner on March 04, 2019

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What skin conditions are related to HIV/AIDS?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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