23 September 2013, 14:06

Poisonous tattoo inks might increase cancer threat – experts


Poisonous ink in permanent tattoos can heighten the risk of cancer, according to experts. Evidence has been found that nanoparticles from the ink can seep into the body and get into the major organs. Manufactures of tattoo inks have confessed that five percent of tattoo parlors use carcinogenic compounds in their ink, however they are trying to push that number down to zero.

Collagen is damaged forever and nanoparticles from the ink pass through the skin and go into the body, according to Desmond Tobin, director of Bradford University's center for skin sciences, with Colin Grant, a medical engineer at the university.

Tobin’s theory is that toxins from the tattoo ink could be getting into the bloodstream and building up in the kidneys or spleen. Both of these organs filter out impurities from the blood. "It takes a long time for the multiple-step nature of cancer to show its face. I don't think we should wait 20 years to see if there is anything wrong with these ingredients," Tobin said.

One study Jorgen Serup conducted from Copenhagen’s university hospital, unveiled that at least 13 cancer-causing substances are present out of the 21 most commonly used European tattoo inks. "Millions of Europeans are now being tattooed with chemical substances of unknown origin," Serup, who has organized the first international conference on tattoo and ink pigment damage, which is taking place in Copenhagen in November, said

"Until now, no one has really looked at the risks, and we need to get proper research going in this field," he said, "People should be given written information about the inks that are used on them. It may be that, like cigarette smoking, they still choose to take the risk, but they need to be informed."

Voice of Russia, The Times of India

    and share via