What are the chances of getting hepatitis from a tattoo?

I’m getting a tattoo soon, and I am positive that I want one. The only thing I’m worried about is getting hepatitis- a blood disease that I’ve heard could be easily passed along when getting a tattoo- much easier to get than AIDS. I’m very, very nervous about this.

Does anyone know what the chances are of getting hepatitis from a tattoo? Do you know anyone who’s gotten it from a tattoo? Or maybe you did? I just need all the information i can get about hepatitis, how it is contracted, etc. The place I’m going for my tattoo says that the tattoo artists have been vaccinated with hepatitis A and B shots. So that being said, how much of a chance is there? And isn’t there a hepatitis C?

Yes, I know LOTS of people who have gotten Hep C through tattoos. Hepatitis A & B have vaccines, but there is no vaccine for Hep c (HCV) which is a disease that is transmitted by blood to blood contamination. And the thing that makes HCV (and HBV) so contagious is that it can live outside the human body for days, on instruments like needles and in the ink, too. A reputable tattoo shop will use new, disposable needles that are to be opened right in front of you. The ink should be poured into small containers then the leftover ink should be thrown out, not reused. The tattoo artist should be wearing gloves, and the environment should be clean. If all those things happen, then you won’t get HCV from a tattoo.
I was diagnosed seven years ago with HCV. I never had a tattoo. My husband and I ride motorcycles with many of our friends who are bikers. I’ve been teased many times because I won’t get a tattoo, but after having to give myself interferon injections three times a week for 6 months, I don’t want to take a chance of exposing myself to a HCV risk factor. I cleared the virus on the chemotherapy treatment and don’t want to go through it again if I don’t have to. You will need to do the research and make an educated decision. Best wishes to you.

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7 Responses to “What are the chances of getting hepatitis from a tattoo?”

  1. ursamaj2 Says:

    Hepatitis is a "blood borne" (meaning carried in the blood), illness. The reason why there is a high incidence of "hepatitis" from getting "tattoo’s" is not the "operator" who is doing the tattooing, but the fact that some places where tattoos are done do not use proper cleaning technique. The hepatitis is spread from "client to client", via the small droplets of blood on the dirty needles. However, if the institution that you are going to for your tattooing is using proper sterilization techniques then you have nothing to worry about.
    References :

  2. legendatz Says:

    One can get very serious and painful tattoo infections from a needle that hasn’t been properly sterilized, even if you’ve had 10 successful tattoos before without any complications.

    Nearly all complaints of tatoo infections today are from unlicensed practitioners, so patronizing approved tattoo shops should eliminate this serious concern.

    While often a concern of “tattoo virgins,” anyone can get an infection, mo matter how much ink they have. Infections, and very especially resistant strains of Staphylococcus aureus (or simply staff), are a major concern that can be simply and effectively at bay by making sure the artist is using properly sterilized equipment.

    It is not unreasonable or rude or un-cool for you to ask to see their licence – they are usually required to be up on the wall somewhere customers can see.
    References :

  3. cindy1323 Says:

    Yes, I know LOTS of people who have gotten Hep C through tattoos. Hepatitis A & B have vaccines, but there is no vaccine for Hep c (HCV) which is a disease that is transmitted by blood to blood contamination. And the thing that makes HCV (and HBV) so contagious is that it can live outside the human body for days, on instruments like needles and in the ink, too. A reputable tattoo shop will use new, disposable needles that are to be opened right in front of you. The ink should be poured into small containers then the leftover ink should be thrown out, not reused. The tattoo artist should be wearing gloves, and the environment should be clean. If all those things happen, then you won’t get HCV from a tattoo.
    I was diagnosed seven years ago with HCV. I never had a tattoo. My husband and I ride motorcycles with many of our friends who are bikers. I’ve been teased many times because I won’t get a tattoo, but after having to give myself interferon injections three times a week for 6 months, I don’t want to take a chance of exposing myself to a HCV risk factor. I cleared the virus on the chemotherapy treatment and don’t want to go through it again if I don’t have to. You will need to do the research and make an educated decision. Best wishes to you.
    References :
    HCV educator, advocate, & survivor

  4. shootingstars957 Says:

    The tattoo artists should have sterilized equipment and if it is a legit place will be very safe………..It is just like a hospital shot it is all clean. And do not ever go to places on the side that reuses needles………………………The artist should be wearing gloves, and you will be fine….. rock on!!!
    References :

  5. 1-2informationalways Says:

    I have read about people getting Hepatitis C from tatoos. Unless much mistaken, this is the same disease actress Pam Anderson got few years back. Although not having read anything else about how she’s doing, back then they were saying it "was a death sentence". In her case it involved tattoos; either she got the disease directly from it or through her then husband, the musician.

    Another celebrity who is said to have had such disease, was Naomi Judd. One way of finding out all dangers regarding tattoos, hepatitis C, and related disease, is to just type any question on the internet address bar.
    References :

  6. S P Says:

    If you go to a CLEAN place then your chance is slim to none. Make sure they show you that they changed the needle before they do it and change the needle after the outlining before they start to color and you will be fine. Hep C doesn’t come from the artist anyways.
    References :

  7. Noel Boyd Says:

    Hi Johanna, the chances of contracting a disease from tattoos is pretty rare. Do ensure that the tattooist uses new needles for your tattoo and ensure that his equipment is sterilized. It’ll help if his shop/studio is clean too.

    I hope this helps. All the best for the tattoo.

    - http://www.noelboyd.com
    References :

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