The Italian Almanac


Italian News - August 22

An Italian MP has raised the alarm about the potentially lethal health threats posed by ad-lib tattooists and pierecers. Antonio Mazzocchi, of the right-wing National Alliance, warned the sector is unregulated, making Italy a 'Wild West' of tattooing.

In 2003 there were two cases of young people who died after contracting infections while having parts of their body pierced. There have also been numerous cases of people catching other serious illness in this way, such as Hepatitis B and C and AIDS.

Mazzocchi said the summertime is a particularly dangerous period, as many youngsters decide to have a tattoo or pierce a part of their body while on holiday at the beach. He called on the local authorities to be especially vigilant over the next few weeks. "At the moment there are over 5,000 people, mainly Orientals, wandering our beaches, doing tattoos and piercing body parts without any sort of health safety measures," he said.