If that tattoo you got when you were in college has faded or turned into wrinkled gibberish and you’ve been thinking about getting it removed, you’re not alone. While the data has remained relatively consistent over time, most studies have shown that about 20% of people who get a tattoo end up regretting their decision within a few years.
While recent surgical advances have made laser tattoo removal much simpler than it once was, the procedure is still challenging, especially for patients with particularly large or elaborate tattoos. This is because the ink particles injected into the skin are so large that completely erasing the tattoo pattern is impossible.
Today, laser tattoo removal is a common, FDA-approved, outpatient procedure. As tattoos have become much more mainstream over the past couple of decades, the number of dermatology practices offering laser tattoo removal has also increased by almost 400% just in the last decade alone.
The procedure itself is straightforward. A trained surgeon will use a laser to remove your tattoo. While some tattoos can be safely and completely removed in one or two sittings, more massive and more elaborate tattoos can take considerably longer and may need to be removed in several sittings taking place over weeks or months.
Laser tattoo removal can be used to remove any tattoo on any part of the human body. Several patients who undergo laser tattoo removal don’t want to remove an entire tattoo. Instead, they want to remove just one specific part of a tattoo while leaving the rest of the tattoo intact is also an option. Whatever the particulars of your situation might be, patients need to communicate their needs clearly to their surgeon before the procedure.
Preparation for laser tattoo removal is simple. Most patients will be asked to wear sunscreen and avoid contact with the sun whenever possible in the days leading up to the surgery. Patients should avoid shaving, waxing, or exfoliating and also avoid tanning, tanning beds, or tanning sprays.
Patients who smoke may be asked to quit smoking for at least six weeks before the procedure, to promote better healing once the procedure is over.
Once the procedure is complete, the recovery is simple, and there are very few side effects. Patients will be instructed to wear sunscreen on the affected area to protect it from ultraviolet radiation for a few days following the surgery. Areas of slight redness or irritation may also occur.
While more extensive and more elaborate tattoos still present a challenge for some providers, laser tattoo removal is considered a routine outpatient procedure with minimal side effects. Once the procedure is over, the majority of our patients are pleased with the results.
If you’re considering laser tattoo removal, contact Metropolitan Vein & Aesthetic Center today.<< Back to all post