OJST  Vol.3 No.2 , May 2013
Susuk: Charm needles in orofacial soft tissues
Abstract: Purpose of the Study: To understand the reasons for charm needle insertions, chemical constituents of charm needles and their significance to magnetic resonance imaging. Materials and Methods: Confidential interviews were used to collect information from charm needle wearers. Two attempts at surgical removal of charm needles were carried out. Charm needle samples were chemically analyzed using EPMA method. A review of literature on the possible complications of charm needles in relation to MRI was made. Results: Patients had varied reasons for wearing charm needles including to be physically attractive, to overcome personal problems and for protection. Charm needles were made of gold alloy consisting of gold (85.2%-88.6%), copper (9.3%-10.8%) and trace elements of aluminium and silver. As such, MRI may not be a hazard to charm needle wearers given the fact that gold is non-ferromagnetic. However, artefacts may potentially distort the MR imaging. Conclusion: A tactful manner in handling these patients may be to ignore the needles unless a clinical need warrants intervention. The surgical removal of these needles may be a straightforward procedure, but the localization is usually a challenging task. At present, the pertinent literature does not contain carefully controlled studies that demonstrate the absolute safety of charm needle exposure to powerful magnetic fields.
Cite this paper: Balasundram, S. , Yee, S. and Shanmuhasuntharam, P. (2013) Susuk: Charm needles in orofacial soft tissues. Open Journal of Stomatology, 3, 155-162. doi: 10.4236/ojst.2013.32028.

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