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Can I get an epidural if I have a tattoo on my back?
Q: I have a tattoo at the bottom of my back, on my spine. My friend told me that I can’t get an epidural because of it. Is that true?
A: The tattoo should not interfere with getting an epidural. A tattoo is pigment trapped in the top layers of your skin. It won’t release any pigment or chemicals into your spinal area during the epidural placement. It’s possible that the epidural placement would be above the location of your tattoo anyway, as most labor epidurals are placed closer to your mid-back.

There are some conditions that may prohibit placement of an epidural. These include having a skin infection or soft tissue near the epidural placement site (such as a herpes sore), a systemic bacterial infection, a blood clotting disorder, being overly dehydrated, taking medication which interferes with coagulation, and certain spinal or neurological disorders.