A tattoo is a collection of large particles of pigment suspended in the skin.
Tattoos can be broadly classified as:
- Professional – Here the pigment deposition is in deeper dermis and they are often meant to be permanent.
- Amateur – They are smaller, lighter and more superficial; easier to remove.
- Cosmetic – These are often referred to as permanent make up, often used for eyebrows, eyeliners, and lips.
- Traumatic – They often follow an abrasion, explosive injury. Pressurized penetration of pigment leads to its deeper penetration. They could be blue or black depending on the depth of the penetration.
Q switched LASERS are the gold standard treatment for tattoo removal. They function on the principle of selective photothermolysis. These LASERS deliver energy in an ultra-short duration with extremely high peak power. When the tattoo particles hit with this energy, they heat up and break down.
The treatment plan depends on various factors like skin type, location of the tattoo, the colour of the tattoo, scarring, layering and amount of ink. A detailed history is taken by Dr. Neha before planning the LASER treatment. Amateur tattoos take lesser sessions to respond as compared to professional tattoos. Colours like orange, red, yellow take additional treatment sessions to respond.
Each tattoo is unique and requires a different number of sessions usually varying from 5 to 10 sessions. Duration could vary from 5 minutes to 20 minutes depending on the size of the tattoo.