What Is Laser Tattoo Removal?
Laser Tattoo removal is most commonly performed using lasers that break down the ink particles in the tattoo. The broken-down ink is then absorbed by the body, mimicking the natural fading that time or sun exposure would create. All tattoo pigments have specific light absorption spectra.
A tattoo laser must be capable of emitting adequate energy within the given absorption spectrum of the pigment to provide an effective treatment.
Laser tattoo removal usually refers to the non-invasive removal of tattoo pigments using Q-switched lasers. Typically, black and other darker-colored inks can be removed completely.
How Does Laser Tattoo Removal Works?
There are other methods of tattoo removal such as dermabrasion and cryosurgery, but laser removal is widely regarded as being the most effective method to remove tattoos. A laser injects the skin with an intense light, which penetrates the skin to break up the ink particles and leads to tattoo fading. The body’s immune system will then remove these pigments over time.
The laser energy is harmless and only targets the pigmented skin, leaving the un-inked surrounding skin unharmed. Similar to laser treatment. Multiple sessions are needed to break down the tattoo, the number which depends on the size and scope of the affected area. As the body needs to remove the fragmented pigment (using scavenger cells) treatments are normally scheduled at least three weeks apart.
Who Is a Good Candidate For a Laser Tattoo Removal?
Each tattoo is unique, removal techniques must be tailored to suit each individual case. In the past, tattoos could be removed by a wide variety of methods but, in any case, the scars were more unsightly than the tattoo itself.
Patients with previously treated tattoos may also be candidates for laser therapy. Tattoos that have not been effectively removed by other treatments or through home remedies may respond well to laser therapy providing the prior treatments did not result in excessive scarring.
What can I expect After Having a Laser Tattoo Removal Treatment?
For the first half-an-hour after laser tattoo removal treatment the tattoo looks pale or white and may swell slightly. The tattoo may feel hot (like sunburn) for a while after laser treatment and it will probably be red and swollen for the rest of the day.
Our Doctor will write a prescription for an effective non-sensitizing anti-biotic ointment to aid in healing and prevent scarring and pain.