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Tongue piercing leads to bacterial infection

"Body art is regnant among undergraduate university students, and there is significant incidence of medical complications among students with piercing,"// said Dr. Lester B. Mayers of the Pace University Athletic Department's Division of Sports Medicine and the lead author of the study.

A survey of university undergraduate students revealed that more than one-half had some type of body piercing and 22 percent suffered a medical complication from the piercing, according to a report in the recent jounal of medicine.

Conforming to the survey, among female students, the navel was the body site most often reported pierced, followed closely by the ear (not including earlobes). Seventeen percent of the females students had pierced tongues. In males, the ear was the body site with the most reported piercings, with 4 percent reporting pierced tongues.

In all, 22 percent of the subjects with piercings reported medical complications. Of piercing complications, bacterial infection was the most reported complication, followed by bleeding and injury or tearing at the site."If our prevalence and complication rates are representative for this age group, these morbid events comprise a considerable demand on and cost to the heath care system,"Dr. Mayer added.


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