From the Medic: Featuring Dr. Janet L. H. Keating of the Duke Family Medicine Center
As a student health physician at Duke University, I see a number of piercings in the course of a year. Rarely is the piercing a reason for the office visit--more often the piercee is being seen for a sprained ankle or a strep throat. However, on occasion, there is a complication with a piercing that requires medical attention.
As piercings become more popular, I am amazed at the lack of basic knowledge most people have when it comes to keeping a piercing and oneself happy and healthy. While all piercings have the inherent risk of becoming infected, oral piercings present a unique and particularly insidious risk for some people: bacterial endocarditis.
What is Endocarditis?