Laser Tattoo Removal, Does It Remove the Whole Tattoo?

I'm a 18 year old girl and i got a tattoo, pretty large on my arm without really thinking about it... and now i hate it. it's about 5 inches in width and 3 in length all black and gray, and i'm very lighted skinned.. i was also diagnosed with body dimorphic disorder, so this whole thing is one big mess.i think the tattoo will never come off or it will leave ink behind Or a nasty scar. i'm not exactly sure what i should do...

Doctor Answers 2

Laser Tattoo Removal

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Lasers can effectively remove tattoos most of the time, especially given that your tattoo is made from relatively dark pigments (lasers are best at treating darker colors). I don't recommend excision of the tattoo, as this will likely leave you with a scar that could look worse than the tattoo. Find a surgeon who is skilled and experienced with pigment lasers (like the Alexandrite Q-Switch), and in 5-15 sessions, your tattoo should be gone.


Best of luck! 

New York Dermatologic Surgeon

Laser tattoo removal is very effective

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Thank you for  your question. Laser tattoo removal can be very effective at eliminating most tattoos with little to no evidence that it was ever present. The fact that you have light skin is beneficial in laser tattoo removal.  Make sure that you go to an experienced physician and that the right laser is used. An Nd:YAG laser is best such as a Medlite 6 or Revlite laser which are now made by Cynosure ConBio. Since you tattoo is so young, it will probably take many treatments, that is at least 10 or more depending on how much ink in present. It is usually best to wait at least 4-6 months after getting a tattoo to have your first treatment. Treatments can be done about one month apart. Good luck.

James McMahan, MD
Columbus Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

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