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Kids with Indelible Labels

Allergic Reactions to Temporary Tattoos in Bali May Turn a Passing Fancy into a Life-Long Scar.

(7/5/2008) The Australian Associated Press has sounded a cautionary note to those considering allowing their children to get a "temporary tattoo" during a Bali holiday.

According to the report, six-year-old Jayden Robertson from Victoria, Australia could be permanently scarred by a Bali tattoo that may prove anything but "temporary." During a Bali holiday in early June 2008, Jayden received a black tribal design on his leg. While the "temporary" tattoo faded as promised over the course of several weeks it was replaced by red welts in the location once occupied by the design.

Doctors believe the young boy may have suffered an allergic reaction to paraphenylenediamine (PPD) used in the tattoo dye. PPD is a compound found in rubber and black hair dye to which an estimated 1% of the total population will have an allergic reaction. Doctors also believe that because of the high concentrations of PPD used in "temporary" tattoos the number suffering a reaction may be as high as 20%.

Those suffering a PPD allergic reaction may be left with permanent scarring and a life-long sensitivity to rubber and hair dye.

The boy’s Mother has warned holiday visitors to Bali about the tattoos, saying: "They look great when you get them but the effect can be horrible."

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