Appearance and culture: oral pathology associated with certain "fashions" (tattoos, piercings, etc.). (1/36)

Humans are characterized by a compulsive tendency to distinguish themselves from the rest: differences in clothes, hairstyle or "decorative" details are used to this effect, based on highly diverse criteria. Such differentiating practices may be aimed at identification with a certain ideological group, for example, or with a concrete "fashion", and involve the use of jewelry, clothes, unusual attire, hairstyles, mutilations, etc. In this context, the present review addresses certain aspects of mutilation practices from both the general and specifically dental perspectives. Mutations imply permanent or lasting sectioning or lesions of a part of the body, and comprise skeletal deforming, dental mutilations, circumcision, ablation of the clitoris, scarification, tattoos, and perforations (particularly of the soft tissues). In this sense, tattoos and perforations or piercings are popular -- particularly among adolescents. This trend may be interpreted as a form of communication, identity expression, or as a type of body cult (i.e., so-called "body art"). Such mutilating practices reflect different motivations including fashion, rebelliousness, differentiation, sexual motives, the remembering of events, physical sensations, and ethnic or tribal influences. However, these practices can cause complications such as infections, laceration and soft and hard tissue damage, hypersensitivity reactions and other alterations of variable severity. Under these premises, questions are raised concerning the competence of those who perform these mutilations, the preventive measures adopted, and the legal conditions under which tattoos and piercings are made in our society.  (+info)

Seroprevalence of hepatitis C virus and associated risk behaviours: a population-based study in San Juan, Puerto Rico. (2/36)

BACKGROUND: Limited information about the epidemiology of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is available in Puerto Rico, one of the areas hardest hit by the human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) epidemic. We estimated the prevalence of HCV infection and identified correlates of seropositivity in the municipality of San Juan, Puerto Rico. METHODS: A probability cluster design was employed to select a sample of households representative of the population aged 21-64 years in San Juan during 2001-2002. All 964 subjects completed a face-to-face interview to gather data on demographics and self-reported risk behaviours followed by venipuncture for HCV antibody testing. Variables that were at least marginally associated with HCV seroprevalence (P < 0.10) in the bivariate analyses were considered for inclusion into the multiple logistic regression model to estimate the adjusted prevalence odds ratio (POR). RESULTS: Overall weighted prevalence of HCV infection was 6.3% (95% CI 3.6-10.9%). A significant (P < 0.05) higher prevalence was observed among subjects with the following characteristics: age 30-49 (9.5%), male sex (10.6%), < or =12 years of education (9.6%), no health coverage (12.6%), lifetime heroin use (39.2%), lifetime cocaine use (39.6%), tattooing practices (34.2%), history of imprisonment (32.8%), and self-reported histories of hepatitis B virus infection (30.4%) and HIV/AIDS (92.1%). Multivariate logistic regression revealed that tattooing practices (POR = 8.9; 95% CI 1.7-44.7), lifetime cocaine use (POR = 5.5; 95% CI 2.2-13.5), blood transfusions prior to 1992 (POR = 4.0; 95% CI 1.6-10.1), lifetime heroin use (POR = 3.3; 95% CI 1.4-7.8), and history of imprisonment (POR = 2.3; 95% CI 1.1-4.9) remained significantly associated with HCV seropositivity. CONCLUSIONS: The large prevalence of HCV infection observed in Puerto Rican adults residing in San Juan suggest that HCV infection is an emerging public health concern and merits further investigation.  (+info)

Should physicians have facial piercings? (3/36)

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to assess attitudes of patrons and medical school faculty about physicians with nontraditional facial piercings. We also examined whether a piercing affected the perceived competency and trustworthiness of physicians. DESIGN: Survey. SETTING: Teaching hospital in the southeastern United States. PARTICIPANTS: Emergency department patrons and medical school faculty physicians. INTERVENTIONS: First, patrons were shown photographs of models with a nontraditional piercing and asked about the appropriateness for a physician or medical student. In the second phase, patrons blinded to the purpose of the study were shown identical photographs of physician models with or without piercings and asked about competency and trustworthiness. The third phase was an assessment of attitudes of faculty regarding piercings. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS: Nose and lip piercings were felt to be appropriate for a physician by 24% and 22% of patrons, respectively. Perceived competency and trustworthiness of models with these types of piercings were also negatively affected. An earring in a male was felt to be appropriate by 35% of patrons, but an earring on male models did not negatively affect perceived competency or trustworthiness. Nose and eyebrow piercings were felt to be appropriate by only 7% and 5% of faculty physicians and working with a physician or student with a nose or eyebrow piercing would bother 58% and 59% of faculty, respectively. An ear piercing in a male was felt to be appropriate by 20% of faculty, and 25% stated it would bother them to work with a male physician or student with an ear piercing. CONCLUSIONS: Many patrons and physicians feel that some types of nontraditional piercings are inappropriate attire for physicians, and some piercings negatively affect perceived competency and trustworthiness. Health care providers should understand that attire may affect a patient's opinion about their abilities and possibly erode confidence in them as a clinician.  (+info)

Code of practice for food handler activities. (4/36)

BACKGROUND: The food industry regulates various aspects of food handler activities, according to legislation and customer expectations. The purpose of this paper is to provide a code of practice which delineates a set of working standards for food handler hygiene, handwashing, use of protective equipment, wearing of jewellery and body piercing. METHODS: The code was developed by a working group of occupational physicians with expertise in both food manufacturing and retail, using a risk assessment approach. Views were also obtained from other occupational physicians working within the food industry and the relevant regulatory bodies. The final version of the code (available in full as Supplementary data in Occupational Medicine Online) therefore represents a broad consensus of opinion. CONCLUSION: The code of practice represents a set of minimum standards for food handler suitability and activities, based on a practical assessment of risk, for application in food businesses. It aims to provide useful working advice to food businesses of all sizes.  (+info)

Complications of body piercing. (5/36)

The trend of body piercing at sites other than the earlobe has grown in popularity in the past decade. The tongue, lips, nose, eyebrows, nipples, navel, and genitals may be pierced. Complications of body piercing include local and systemic infections, poor cosmesis, and foreign body rejection. Swelling and tooth fracture are common problems after tongue piercing. Minor infections, allergic contact dermatitis, keloid formation, and traumatic tearing may occur after piercing of the earlobe. "High" ear piercing through the ear cartilage is associated with more serious infections and disfigurement. Fluoroquinolone antibiotics are advised for treatment of auricular perichondritis because of their antipseudomonal activity. Many complications from piercing are body-site-specific or related to the piercing technique used. Navel, nipple, and genital piercings often have prolonged healing times. Family physicians should be prepared to address complications of body piercing and provide accurate information to patients.  (+info)

Overview of complications secondary to tongue and lip piercings. (6/36)

In recent years, intraoral and perioral piercings have grown in popularity among teenagers and young adults. This is of concern to dental and medical professionals because of the risks and complications for oral, dental and general health. The risks and complications associated with tongue and lip piercings range from abnormal tooth wear and cracked tooth syndrome to gingival recession and systemic infections. In this report, we provide an overview of possible problems associated with oral piercings that may be encountered by dentists.  (+info)

Hepatitis C awareness among adolescents in the Alpes-Maritimes area of France. (7/36)

OBJECTIVES: Certain practices with a potential risk of hepatitis C virus (HCV) transmission begin early, during adolescence. In 2004, primary prevention interventions targeting adolescents aged 13-17 years attending school in the Alpes-Maritimes region of France were conducted by the "Reseau Hepatite C Ville Hopital Cote d'Azur". The aim of this study was to assess the adolescents' knowledge about HCV and to evaluate the impact of such interventions. METHODS: A random sample of secondary state schools in the Alpes-Maritimes was invited to participate in the study. Before and after presenting a slide show about HCV in the selected classrooms, the investigators asked the students to complete an anonymous self-administered questionnaire designed to assess their knowledge about HCV infection. RESULTS: The intervention concerned a study population of 2,946 students, mean age 14.4 +/- 2.5 years. Before the interventions, 21% had good knowledge of HCV infection and 24% had good know-ledge of disease contagion. These percentages increased significantly after the interventions to 95% and 84% respectively. Knowledge improvement was more significant among high school students and among students whose parents had an employment. CONCLUSIONS: Adolescents are poorly informed about HCV infection. The present intervention enabled significant improvement in their knowledge about the infection and disease contagion, independently of gender, age and geographical area.  (+info)

Awareness of the risk of endocarditis associated with tattooing and body piercing among patients with congenital heart disease and paediatric cardiologists in the United Kingdom. (8/36)

Body art in the form of tattoos and piercing has become increasingly popular amongst children and teenagers, and is nowadays more socially acceptable despite media reports citing tissue destruction and death. Our study explored the awareness and experience of patients with congenital heart disease, and of cardiologists and professionals responsible for their care.  (+info)