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Man Dies After Flesh-Eating Bacteria Infected His New Tattoo: Safety Precautions To Remember After Getting Inked

3 June 2017, 10:22 am EDT By Athena Chan Tech Times
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An unidentified man from Texas passed away soon after contracting a flesh-eating bacterial infection when he swam in the sea just mere days after getting a tattoo. With more people getting tattoos than ever, it is important to take safety reminders seriously especially right after getting inked.

Death From A Flesh-Eating Bacteria

An unnamed 31-year-old man from Texas passed away about two months after being admitted to the hospital. His turmoil began when he decided to go for a swim in the Gulf of Mexico just five days after getting a tattoo. Soon after, he suffered from fever, chills, and a rash developed close to his tattoo.

Within a few hours, skin discoloration developed and he was already in the early stages of septic shock. A few hours more and he was considered to be in the severe stages. The man tested positive for a flesh-eating bacteria that lurks in seawater. Unfortunately, the man's fresh tattoo and his chronic liver disease made him especially vulnerable to the infection.

Safe Tattoo Practices

Apart from the obvious consideration before getting a tattoo, which is that it is not something that can easily be removed if you somehow change your mind, the FDA has a few pointers that may help when you are planning to get a tattoo.

Before anything, it's important to ensure that the materials to be used in the process are all sterile. This includes both ink and equipment, though it is still difficult to tell which inks are safe to use since the FDA has not approved any ink to be injected into the body for cosmetic purposes.

Observe Your Tattoo

Rash and redness are normal reactions that can occur on or around the area of the tattoo. However, more serious reactions can cause fever, chills, shaking, and sweat. These reactions may have to be treated with antibiotics, but more serious cases could require surgery.

A rash could also persist if you have an allergic reaction to the tattoo ink, which is why it is important to closely monitor the tattoo for any adverse reactions that persist beyond the normal after tattoo rash. Any concerns should be directed to a health professional.

Inform A Medical Practitioner Before An MRI

Some people's tattoos get a burning sensation during an MRI, so it is important to let the health care professional know that you have a tattoo before the procedure. These reactions, however, are rare and temporary.

Keep The Tattoo Clean

Considering the case of the man from Texas, it would be better to avoid swimming much too soon after getting a tattoo. Tattoos are considered as open wounds, so the best way to keep it uninfected is by treating the body art the same way that one would treat any normal wound, which is with safety and care.

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