Body Piercing, Tattoos, and Electrolysis

Amanda (Robinson) Valyko, MPH, CIC Infection Control Practitioner

Infection Control & Epidemiology
University of Michigan Health System
Ann Arbor, MI

Original Publication:
October 2, 2014


Body piercing, tattoos, and electrolysis are becoming more common. As these practices become more prevalent in society, healthcare facilities see patients with complications from these procedures, particularly in family practice and pediatrics. In some ways, body piercing, tattoos, and electrolysis carry some of the same risks as operative procedures. There is a risk of infection to both the client and the operator. Proper infection prevention practices are important to mitigate the risk of infection; however, little regulation exists in the United States and varies by state.