Tattoos are injections of colored ink into the skin, resulting in permanent images. There are many reasons why people choose to decorate their skin with tattoos. On the flip side, there are many reasons why people choose to remove the tattoo.
Q: Who is an ideal candidate for this procedure?
A: There are many reasons why a person wants to have a tattoo removed. Even though reasons vary from person to person, here are some examples:
Outgrowing original reasons for wanting the tattoo
Starting a new job and would like to clean the skin’s appearance.
Regretting or embarrassed about a certain tattoo on your body.
However these reasons are not the only factors that determine a qualified candidate for tattoo removal. A patient should have realistic goals and expectations for the procedure.
Q: Where do I begin?
A: For those who decide on having a tattoo removed, the first step is to come to a consultation. During the consultation, we will discuss issues such as the patient’s reasons for wanting the tattoo removed and the various options available for the procedure. This visit gives us a chance to view the tattoo and evaluate the options. The removal procedure will be discussed in detail, as well as the risks, limitations, and benefits. If the tattoo removal involves several sessions, the treatment plan will include details on how often the patient should return for following visits, and how long the entire treatment process can take.
Q: How much pain is involved in tattoo removal with YAG-laser?
A: The treatment is relatively painless. Patients have described the sensation like a lightly stretched rubber band snapped against the skin. Afterwards, the treated area may feel somewhat like a mild sunburn. The tattoo fades as the area heals, usually disappearing completely within a month or two. Not all tattoos, however, can be removed completely and can leave just a shadow.
Q: What are the risks to having a tattoo removed with YAG-laser?
A: Since the YAG-laser is removing pigment from the tattoo, some of your normal skin pigmentation may also be lighter. This could result in a slightly lighter area of skin where the tattoo was.