Berlin / DPA
Not only tattoos as well as used needles can probably cause allergies. "In tattooing, chromium and nickel particles can separate from the needles and enter the lymph nodes," explains Ines Schreiver of the Federal Bureau of Risk Assessment (BfR).
Schreiber published a study with colleagues in the journal "Fiber Particles and Toxicology." Therefore, allergy-causing metals dissolve especially frequently when using titanium dioxide, which is contained in many colors for tattoos such as green, red and blue.
Ordinary tattoo needles are made of an alloy that also contains about six to eight percent nickel to 20 percent chromium. Both metals are toxic and can cause allergies if broken down.
According to Schreiver, the new finding was an accidental finding: "We discovered metallic particles in the study of color tattoos. Detective work has revealed that they came from needle punching. "
In a previous study, researchers have already shown that toxic pigments from color tattoos can accumulate in lymph nodes for years. Now it has been shown that needle particles also find their way into these organs of the immune system, Schreiver says.
The extent to which the deposits are damaging to health and causing allergies must be further investigated. This would require extensive studies with several thousand participants over several years.
If colorful tattoos are more dangerous than black tattoos, I also couldn't say for sure. "Inferior black may also contain nickel in high concentrations," the researchers noted.