Skin Infections Linked to Tattoo Ink
Duchin said that many more cases may be occurring, but they may go unrecognized because in some people "[the infections] get better on their own."
Labs don't normally run tests for this type of bacteria, in part because doing so is difficult and takes a long time. But Duchin says doctors who see patients with otherwise unexplained infections should consider Mycobacterium haemophilum as a source.
Another concern is the growing popularity of body art, which may be designed and applied by artists who are less than diligent at adhering to safe practices.
"For healthcare providers, the key is to think about these organisms in patients who develop tattoo- associated infections, especially those that don't respond to initial treatment."
Cheryl Clark is senior quality editor and California correspondent for HealthLeaders Media. She is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists.
- EHR Systems 'Immature, Costly,' AMA Says
- Anthem Blue Cross, 7 CA Health Systems Create New Challenger, Business Model
- Better HCAHPS Scores Protect Revenue
- Interstate Medical Licensure Effort Advances
- Data Points to Boom in Private HIX
- How to Build a Health Plan from Scratch
- Narrow Networks Cut Costs, Not Quality, Economists Say
- CEO Exchange: Preparing for Population Health
- Insurers see cost hikes in Partners HealthCare (MA) mergers
- Programs focus on high-risk patients to reduce spending