About 13% of Italiansaccording to the Higher Institute of Health, has at least one tattoo on her skin. This practice is used to leave traces on one’s body of sentences, names of loved ones and drawings of various kinds, portraits, imaginary figures and graphic elements. A habit that, however, determines various risks for the health of the skin, such as the hidden melanoma phenomenon. This is what an article published in ‘Allies for Health‘, the portal dedicated to medical-scientific information created by Novartis, which recalls how the new EU directive, which entered into force on 4 January 2022, instead of making it impossible to carry out colored tattoos, actually only establishes stricter controls on some substances present in the pigmentssuch as isopropyl alcohol, considered harmful.
Even beyond the specific directive, in the clinical world the skin is the special watched for in the case of tattoos because it can face various dangers. One of the least considered risks – the article reports – is the so-called hidden melanoma, that is the fact that tattoos, especially if particularly extensive, can cover existing ones, making it difficult to guess the possible evolution of these moles in a melanoma. Furthermore, in many cases this neoplasm arises on healthy skin, without pre-existing ones, in the form of a dark spot, but if a large portion is covered, it becomes very difficult to identify.
Early diagnosis of melanoma is essential for the effectiveness of therapies. Over time, in fact, the cancer cells are able to penetrate deeply, allowing the melanoma to enter the bloodstream and spread to other organs, such as the liver, lung, bones and brain, causing widespread metastases with even lethal consequences. Conversely, treating an early stage melanoma allows most patients to heal. For prevention, the first step is the mapping of the moleswhich must still be performed regularly, but which in these cases must be carried out every 6 months, so that the dermatologist can evaluate any alarm bells that are not very visible, such as the appearance of dark spots or mutations in the shape and color of the moles.
Pigments and solvents used to make tattoos can also cause allergic reactions, infections and granulomas, or small nodules under the skin. In these cases, in addition to undergoing appropriate treatments, it may be necessary to remove the tattoo.
To limit the risks, it is important to contact only qualified tattoo artists, who work in full compliance with safety standards, and then carefully follow the instructions relating to the care and cleaning of the tattoo.
The full article is available on: https://www.alleatiperlasalute.it/alla-scoperta-di/tattoos-tra-i-rischi-anche-il-melanoma-nascosto.
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