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Tattoos can lead to a life of pain

Most people suffer no physical problems after getting a tattoo, but 10% do, a new study shows.istockphoto

Most people suffer no physical problems after getting a tattoo, but 10% do, a new study shows.

Heading for the tattoo parlor? You may end up with more than a freshly-inked bicep — like swelling, rashes, infection and chronic pain.

A new study reveals that 10% of New Yorkers reported experiencing such complications after getting inked.

“We were rather alarmed at the high rate,” said Dr. Marie Leger, one of four NYU researchers behind the study.

And the majority of the victims reported that their complications became chronic, sometimes lasting for years. Some of the problems required surgery to remove the affected skin.

Most of these misfortunes do not come from a dirty needle or an incompetent tattoo artist — rather they’re just adverse reactions to tattoo ink.

“For those who form scars or keloids, this is just bad luck of sorts. Even with meticulous technique, sometimes this cannot be avoided,” said Dr. Dendy E. Engelman, director of dermatologic surgery of the Metropolitan Hospital in Upper East Side.

Seeing how testing the ink on an inconspicuous area is not practical, most people will have to hope for the luck of the draw.

Engelman, however, suggests these simple tips to minimizing the chances for disaster when getting inked:

— Thoroughly cleanse the skin prior to the treatment. Ensure the tattoo artist also preps the skin with alcohol.

— Avoid blood thinning agents like alcohol, aspirin, Advil, Aleve, etc to minimize bleeding, bruising and associated risks.

— Apply antibacterial cream to the treated area, and keep the area clean.

— Allow for complete skin healing before applying cosmetics.

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Health – NY Daily News


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