Tattoo removal has been performed with various tools. While tattoos were once considered permanent, it is now possible to remove them with treatments, fully or partially.

Q-switched lasers are effective on tattoos because they have a very high power and short pulse duration that shatters the pigment. Different wavelengths are also used to target different tattoo ink colours.

What to expect
Pre-treatment might include the application of an anaesthetic cream for 45 to 90 minutes prior to the laser treatment session. Immediately after treatment, a slightly elevated, white discolouration with or without the presence of punctuate bleeding is often observed. Subsequently, a crust appears over the entire tattoo, which sloughs off at approximately 14 days after treatment

Number of sessions needed
Complete laser tattoo removal requires numerous treatment sessions, typically spaced at least four weeks apart.

The amount of time required for the removal of a tattoo and the success of the removal varies with each individual. Factors influencing this include: skin type, location, colour, amount of ink, scarring or tissue change, and layering. Certain colours are more difficult to remove than others.

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