I have a tattoo on the web of my hand and I wanted to get a excision. (photo)

Hey I have a tattoo on the web of my hand and I wanted to get a excision. I have had three treatments with laser and I still don't see a big difference. Would excision work for my tattoo?

Doctor Answers 7

Pico-Way Laser Is Best For Tattoo Removal- Many Sessions Needed

You didn't mention what type of laser was being used for your removal, but I would recommend PicoWay. Three sessions are not enough to remove a tattoo. It usually takes at least five or six sessions before you get the results you want, but it may take up to seven or eight or more. As long as the tattoo is starting to fade, the laser is working. I would not recommend excision in your case. Please discuss your progress with a board-certified dermatologist.

Honolulu Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Tattoo Removal

Thank you for your question in regards to tattoo removal. Excision of your tattoo would leave massive scarring with a potential of having a fat graft. Laser tattoo removal consists of a series of treatments with months in between. It's important to have patience and a realistic expectation of timing and results. To be sure what is best for you, see two or more board-certified providers in your area for a complete evaluation to make sure you are a good candidate and that it is safe for you to have treatment. I hope this helps.

J. Jason Wendel, MD, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 183 reviews

Excision not recommended


Thanks for your question. If the laser for tattoo removal is not working for you, it is best to leave be. Excision in that area is very risky and would leave unsightly scarring. Best, Dr. Katz

Bruce E. Katz, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon
3.8 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Patience is the Key to Laser Tattoo Removal

Thanks for your question.  You did not mention what kind of laser treatment you have used.  We have treated several black/blue ink tattoos with great success.  We utilize a PicoSure with 755nm for this color ink. 

Patience is the key to any laser tattoo removal plan.  We tell every Pico tattoo removal patient to expect at least 6 treatments and don't be surprised if it is 10-12 or longer with thick tribal tattoos.  We see some patients twice a year and their tattoos seem to clear up to 6 months.  After using the PicoSure for 2 years, we have found it is best to wait 2-6 months between treatments.  There is a limit to how small the laser can break up the ink.  It's up to you and your body to take the ink away.  We encourage our patients to drink plenty of water, sweat it out and eat a healthy diet between treatments.

We recommend finding an experienced physician in your area.  Treatment prices vary by market.  You are trying to reverse permanent ink.  Good Luck and have patience!

Laura Riehm, MD
Fort Worth Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

This tattoo is too large to excise

In order to remove a tattoo you have to have a reasonable chance to close the wound.  This tattoo is too large to excise, but laser tattoo removal would be fine here.  Good luck!

Joel Schlessinger, MD
Omaha Dermatologic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

Tattoo excision

That tattoo is too large to excise.  I would not recommend it.   It is not uncommon to require more than 3 treatments, sometimes many more than 3 treatments, to reach a satisfactory result. I would be persistent with laser.  I would also ask what type of laser is being used.  A picosecond laser, such as Enlighten, should work well on a dark tattoo and require few treatments than older lasers.

Jeffrey Gosin, MD, FACS
Atlantic City Vascular Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Excision of hand tattoo

This is too large an area to get excised. It will leave significant scarring even if it could be excised. There is not enough skin to close this after excision. Make sure that a type of Pico laser is being used if you aren't getting the results you want.

Steven F. Weiner, MD
Panama City Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.