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JAMA Clinical Challenge
November 17, 2015

Gradually Worsening Tattoo Lesion

Author Affiliations
  • 1Division of Infectious Diseases, St John’s Hospital and Medical Center, Detroit, Michigan
  • 2Division of Infectious Diseases, Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan
JAMA. 2015;314(19):2071-2072. doi:10.1001/jama.2015.10066

A 37-year-old woman who had had a tattoo placed on her left arm in a tattoo parlor 2 weeks previously presented with gradually worsening swelling and itching in the red ink area of the tattoo (Figure). Topical hydrocortisone cream (1%) applied for 1 week had provided no benefit. She had no fever or any other systemic symptoms. She was otherwise in excellent health, with no history of allergies, no recent travel, and no animal exposure or trauma to her arm.

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