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3.3 Single-Use Disposable Needles

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This article is from the Piercing FAQ, by Anne Greenblatt with numerous contributions by others.

3.3 Single-Use Disposable Needles

Piercing needles are hollow, lancet-point needles, beveled and
sharpened similarly to the hypodermic needles used by medical
professionals. Most are about 2 inches in length. Piercing needles
slice a crescent-shaped hole and do not remove tissue. The larger the
needle, the more exaggerated the crescent shape of the hole. Most
piercers do not perform piercings larger than 10 or 8ga. Many piercers
in Europe use cannula needles designed for intravenous drips, which
are fitted with a plastic sheath that is used to thread the jewelry
into the piercing.

The needle should remain in its sterile autoclave package until the
piercer is ready to proceed with the piercing. Needles should be used
only once and placed in a medical sharps container which is disposed
of through a medical waste disposal service. Aside from cleanliness
concerns, needles are noticibly dulled from a single use.


"Complications of Ear Piercing: Treatment and Prevention," W.M.
Hendricks, Asheboro Dermatology Clinic, North Carolina. Cutis, 48:5,
1991 Nov, 384-94, ISSN 0011-4162.

"Embedded Earrings," H.A. Cohen et.al., Pediatric Community Clinic,
Petach Tikvah, Israel. Cutis, 53:2, 1994 Feb, 82, ISSN 0011-4162.

"Embedded Earrings: a Complication of the Ear Piercing Gun,"
H.R. Muntz et. al., Department of Pediatric Otolaryngology, St. Louis
Children's Hospital, Washington University Medical Center, Missouri
63110. In J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol, 19:1, 1990 Mar, 73-6, ISSN

"Experts Discourage Use of Home Piercing Kits," WRAL-5, Oct 20 97,

"Hazards of Ear Piercing Procedures which Traverse Cartilage: A Report
of Pseudomonas perichondritis and Review of Other Complications," V.L.
Cumberworth and T.B. Hogarth, Department of Otolaryngology, Queen's
Medical Centre, University Hospital, Nottingham, England. Br J Clin
Pract, 44:11, 1990 Nov, 512-3, ISSN 0007-0947.

"The Piercing Gun," Association of Professional Piercers Procedural
Standards, 1998 edition, pp 31-38, http://www.safepiercing.org


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