Las Vegas Sun

October 23, 2014

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Parents warned about high school students piercing each other

Spring Valley High School students have been using sewing needles and paper clips to pierce fellow students’ ears, navels and nipples at home and at school, Clark County School District officials said.

A parent contacted the district after a child received a piercing from another student and subsequently got an infection. About eight other students received piercings from classmates at home and in a campus locker room, officials said.

A letter was being sent home today to Spring Valley parents calling attention to these body-piercing incidents and warning about the dangers of unclean needles. Students who engage in this behavior may face disciplinary action, officials said.

“Frankly, this is very dangerous when kids do this,” School District spokesman Michael Rodriguez said. “We want parents to be aware and have that conversation with their kids.”

School District officials said they are not aware of a widespread trend of students piercing each other in the 49 high schools in Clark County.

“We don’t know how prevalent this is,” Rodriguez said. “But we want to be proactive so parents can talk to their kids and avoid more kids getting infections.”

Infections can occur if the piercing site is not properly cleaned before and after the piercing and if a dirty needle is involved. Signs of infection around a piercing site include heat, redness, swelling, pus or bleeding.

Students exhibiting these symptoms after a piercing should be evaluated immediately by a doctor, said officials with the School District and the Southern Nevada Health District.

Even if students don’t exhibit any symptoms of infection, they may be at risk of other diseases, such as HIV or hepatitis, officials said.

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