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.