Hepatitis: Careless body piercing for tattoos are at risk – Expert

Hepatitis: Careless body piercing for tattoos are at risk – Expert

Dr Adenike Enikuomehin, a consultant endocrinologist with the University of Medical Sciences Teaching Hospital, Akure Annex, has warned that careless body piercing for tattoos can  put users at  the risk of contracting Hepatitis.

Enikuomehin said  this at a free screening on Hepatitis held at the Mother and Child Hospital in Akure. The screening was organised by the Medical Women Association of Nigeria (MWAN), Ondo State chapter.

Enikuomehin expressed concerns  about the growing acceptability of tattoos by both the young and the  old. She said that there must be more enlightenment on why people should be careful with  the kind of sharp objects they use for incisions.

“Sharing of sharp objects is now common these days with the advent and more acceptability of tattoos and scarification marks.

“People appear to be less bothered about whether the sharp objects are sterilised before being used on them which puts them at the  risks of contracting Hepatitis.

“One of the means of contracting Hepatitis, especially the chronic one,  is through sharing of unscreened blood from contact with sharp objects,”she said.

She,however, said that early diagnosis and treatment of hepatitis would help reduce increasing incidences of liver problems and deaths.

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Enikuomehin called for more investments in diagnostic tests and medicines for treating hepatitis to save lives and reduce costs of long-term care of associated diseases such as liver cancer.

“We can invest in eliminating hepatitis by going for screening to know one’s status and vaccinating a child at birth which is free.

“Governments at all levels should also show more concerns and care for the campaign against hepatitis,”she said.

Also, Dr Folasade Akinwande, a dental surgeon, coroborated Enikuomehin by saying that there was  the need for more awareness  for regular screening for an early detection of  the viral disease.

Another member of the association,  Dr Patricia Eniowo, stressed the need for mothers to avail their children of  immunisation against Hepatitis at birth to prevent them from being infected as they grow.

No fewer than 400 people benefitted from the screening.

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