Laser Tattoo Removal
There may come a time when you regret having permanent tattoo ink etched into your skin. Thankfully, laser tattoo removal can break down tattoo ink and erase the formerly permanent mark. Dr. Mark Chin and his staff use the powerful RevLite™ Q-Switched Nd:YAG laser to remove tattoo ink and restore evenly toned skin.
Achieved With Laser Tattoo Removal
While tattoos are permanent, personal preferences are constantly shifting. Tattoos often represent a certain time in a person’s life, and once that period has passed, the remainder may become unwanted or even painful. It has been said that “tattoos are a permanent reminder of a temporary feeling.” Some tattoos are instantly regretted due to poor skill on the part of the tattoo artist, and other tattoos later become visually distorted due to scarring, weight fluctuations, or aging. Laser tattoo removal can resolve each these issues by permanently destroying tattoo ink.
A variety of techniques has long been available for tattoo removal. However, many had a tendency to leave unsightly scars that were less appealing than the tattoos themselves. With laser tattoo removal, there is very little risk of scarring. The skin will look virtually untouched and will regain an even skin tone.
Laser tattoo removal has few possible side effects. While some patients may experience hyperpigmentation or hypopigmentation, the risk of infection is low. This technique is safer than methods such as surgical excision due to its ability to selectively target the pigmented ink.
Addressing Your Concerns
Tattoo removal with the RevLite™ Q-Switched Nd:YAG laser has no recovery period. After each treatment, the area will be covered with a bandage or patch to protect it. Patients can immediately resume normal activities but should be careful not to expose the tattoo site to sunlight.
There is very little risk of scarring after laser tattoo removal. However, scarring that resulted from the initial tattooing event may become noticeable after laser tattoo removal. The laser treatment cannot remove scar tissue, but it will remove the tattoo ink. Some patients may experience hyperpigmentation (where the treated skin darkens) or hypopigmentation (where the treated skin lightens), but for most individuals, the area will ultimately look as though no tattoo had ever been there.
The total cost of laser tattoo removal depends on how many treatments are necessary to remove the tattoo ink. During your consultation, you will be given an estimate based on the quality and depth of your tattoo.
Laser tattoo removal treatment uses light pulses to attack the ink. Each pulse of light may feel like a snap of a rubber band against the skin. Topical anesthetic cream may be used to ease discomfort during the procedure.
How does the RevLite™ Q-Switched Nd:YAG laser work?The RevLite™ Q-Switched Nd:YAG laser uses a multi-wavelength system of light pulses to selectively target specific colors of tattoo ink. Treatment can be customized to each patient and each tattoo. The pulses of light energy are rapidly absorbed and cause the tattoo ink to break down. The broken ink pigments are then naturally filtered from the body.
Can laser tattoo removal eliminate any tattoo color?The RevLite™ Q-Switched Nd:YAG laser has the versatility and capability to target the full spectrum of tattoo ink colors. Black and blue ink tend to be the easiest to remove, and these colors may respond more quickly to the treatment than other colors.
Can laser tattoo removal help me if I want to remove only a portion of my tattoo?If you only want to have part of your tattoo removed, laser tattoo removal can eliminate a select portion of it. For instance, if you would like to have some of your tattoo “cleaned up” or to remove a word or name but keep other artwork, laser tattoo removal can help.
How many treatments will I need?The number of treatments needed will depend on the patient and the tattoo. For instance, large, multi-layered tattoos may take more treatments than a small black tattoo. Most patients need between four and eight treatments, but some may need as many as 10 or more. Between each treatment, your tattoo will become progressively lighter as the ink breaks down and fades away.
How long does it take to remove a tattoo?Effective laser tattoo removal relies heavily on the body’s ability to flush away the pigment. Consequently, it may take up to a year or more for the body to fully eliminate the ink. Each treatment should be spaced at least six weeks apart to allow the body time to filter out the pigment without risking light damage to the sensitive tattooed skin. Dr. Chin will be able to estimate how many treatments should be needed to permanently remove your tattoo and how long the process is likely to take.