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Fatal complications of tongue piercing

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The most fatal complication of tongue piercing can be death (very rare). Death can occur in patients with pierced tongues in the following cases:

1. Tongue usually swells after the piercing is done. At times the tongue swells to an enormous size, resulting in edema and obstruction of the airway, which would ultimately lead to asphyxiation and death.{{more}}

2. In cases of emergency after an accident, if artificial respiration is required, the tongue jewelry will act as a hindrance to the oropharyngeal tube. This means delayed artificial respiration or no respiration at all at times.

3. If the jewelry becomes loose, chances of its aspiration are there. This may result in choking or severe damage to the respiratory or digestive tract.

4. In medically compromised patients or patients on anticoagulant therapy, tongue piercing can lead to excessive bleeding and hemorrhage, which can be fatal.

5. Risk of transmission of life threatening disease like Hepatitis B,C,D, HIV/AIDS, syphilis and tetanus are there, due to lack of aseptic techniques used for tongue piercing.

6. In some cases, staphylococcal infection occurs, leading to toxic shock syndrome. Symptoms of toxic shock syndrome include sunburn like rash, fever, muscle aches, vomiting, dizziness and rapid pulse. This can be very fatal if proper and immediate treatment is not given.

Dr Keith John

Email:drkeithjohn@gmail.com

Clinic: SVG Dental Corporation

Telephone: 784-456-2220

Cell: 784-526-0752

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