The dangers of swimming with a new tattoo have been demonstrated in a series of alarming images.
Tattoo artists generally advise not entering the sea or freshwater until two weeks after ink has been applied.
But in a worst-case-scenario, a 31-year-old man with a heavy drinking habit caught a dangerous bacteria while swimming in the Gulf of Mexico.
The vibrio vulnificus bug is believed to have entered his body through the raw tattoo wound and later killed him.
The findings were demonstrated in the journal BMJ Case Reports, which published the case to highlight the risks of the infection combined with liver cirrhosis.
The man drank six bottles of beer a day which had harmed his liver. It is believed this left him more susceptible to the effects of the vibrio vulnificus bacteria.
Two days after swimming in the sea, and a week after getting the cross style tattoo done, the Hispanic man began to feel feverish symptoms and a severe pain in his leg around the site of the tattoo.
Several hours after he was admitted to hospital, black and purple lesions began forming on the man’s leg.
The patient’s tattoo and skin lesions (BMJ Case Reports)
A day later, the man went into progressive septic shock. Despite an aggressive course of treatment, his wounds continued to deteriorate.
A fortnight after he entered hospital, the tattoo split open and black boils appeared on the man’s leg.
The patient’s tattoo two weeks after infection (BMJ Case Reports)
He then developed gangrene and doctors considered amputating the limb – but decided against it because of the man’s chronic liver disease.
He died two months after he was admitted.
Motivational Tattoos by Francesca Timbers
Doctors said the v. vulnificus had a high mortality rate in patients chronic liver disease, and warned patients with the condition should avoid swimming in seawater with open wounds.
But fresh tattoos are not the only way to become infected with the…