Please Remove my Ink -Vernon Hills, IL

Chicago Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 19 reviews
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I'm having part of a larger tattoo removed. As...

I'm having part of a larger tattoo removed. As soon as I got this tattoo done, I regretted it. After letting it heal for a couple months, I chose to have it removed. I've had 4 picosure treatments in Vernon Hills, IL

I'm hoping to have this terrible mistake removed soon! I'm pretty depressed about it and it's had a horrible effect on my day-to-day life.

5 weeks post 3rd treatment

I'm had my 4th treatment on 10/11/13. Dr said he was hoping it would be gone by 4th treatment. Obviously it's not yet. Hoping it'll be fine by #7

Some before/after pics

Hard day today

I have some good days and bad days. Unfortunately today is the latter. I worry that my 4-yr-old daughter will think poorly of my mistake. I go out of my way to hide the tattoo from her. I also have a baby on the way. I pray this tattoo will be gone before he/she arrives next summer. What a stupid mistake.

Anyone else?

To those receiving pico treatments- following a treatment, when are you witnessing the most fading?

My first couple of treatments, it was very obvious almost immediately. The 3rd tx it took a few weeks.

I'm just trying to get a grasp on what everyone else is seeing.

It's been a rough couple of days. Not so much physically, but mentally/emotionally. I just really want thinks tattoo off so I can go back to living a "normal" life with my family. Good luck to everyone. Hope you all are well.

5 weeks post 4TX update

I had my 4th treatment 4 weeks ago. I return for #5 in one week. I didn't see as much instant fading as I had in previous treatments, but saw good fading during the last few weeks.

All the light shading was gone after the 2nd TX. I'm now just left with the shading that was VERY dense. (The tattoo artist didn't do any outlines).

I have some patches of hyperpigmentation, but they are small. After treatment #5, I'm taking 8 weeks off to enjoy the holidays and let my skin have a few extra weeks to recover.

More pics

Side-by-side pics of all 4TX

Pre pico
Post 1tx
Post 2tx
Post 3tx
Post 4tx

Treatment #5

Here we go. I'm sitting in the lobby awaiting another treatment. He just went over the tattoo with the picosure and the Dr wants me to wait 25 minutes and he's going to zap it again.

Hopefully this yields some good results, as I wasn't as impressed with session #4 as I was sessions 1-3.

This whole process is mentally and emotionally draining. I have additional tattoos I want to remove as well, but the thought of starting this process all over again makes me sick to my stomach.

What a stupid decision I made! I remember how carefree and stress free my life was before I did this to myself and I keep beating myself up over it.

Well, I'm about ready to go back in. Wish me luck.

I'll post pics in a few weeks

6 weeks post 5 TX

It's been 6 weeks since my 5th treatment. I'll be returning for #6 next week.

To be honest, I was hoping the tattoo would be gone by #6, but it's clear I'll still need a few more sessions. This is likely due to the fact the tattoo was only 6 weeks old when I began laser treatments. Of the tat was 10 years old, it would be gone by now.

Most of the fading occurs around the 3 week mark after a treatment. I have been going 5 weeks between treatments, but took a few extra weeks off around the holidays. It's been nice to not think about it.

Having a hard time

I so desperately wanted to start this new year off on a good note, but today is yet another day where I'm in a depressed mood.

I seem to be having days like this more often and am considering taking anti-depressant medication. I've never taken them before and don't know what to expect or even how to go about getting them.

Any information that anyone could share would be most appreciated.

Treatment #6.

Well, I'm sitting in the waiting room waiting for treatment #6. Not really looking forward to the next 7 days as in usually tender and covered in blisters for a week.

The worse part of this is the freaking drive! 5+ hours EACH way. I spend the entire drive telling myself what an idiot I am for having got this tattoo in the first place.

One step closer, I guess. Hopefully removal is just around the corner.
I'll post pics in a couple weeks.

#7 today

I'm on my way to get my 7th treatment. I'm kind of disappointed with the results from treatment #6. I didn't notice much fading overall.

I was really hoping to be done by now. I'm realizing that I easily have another 6+ treatments ahead of me- probably a full year to go. :(. I have a baby due in May and was really hoping to have this tattoo gone by then. That definitely won't happen, as I'll only be to treatment #8 by then.

I have some hyper/hypo pigmentation going on, but it's considerably better than it was early on. I have some areas that had very dense black ink that are now completely clear, but I have a few spots that will NOT budge at all. It's very frustrating.

This journey sucks! The 5 hour drive each way only makes things worse. Winter and long sleeves has helped me mentally, but with spring around the corner I'm afraid of my depression returning.

I'm considering ordering "tattoo camo" to hide it. Does anyone have any experience with this product?

#7 in the books

Just finished. He went over the tattoo with a q-switch 1064, has me wait 20 minutes, then went over it with the pico.

He said that he has great success at removing all-black tattoos and assured me he would get the entire tattoo removed.

Now I begin the worst part of the day- the 5 hour drive home with a tender arm while I chug water the entire trip.

Hope everyone is doing well. Good luck!


I'm 3 weeks into my 7th tx and have noticed minimal fading. The last 3 sessions haven't really seem to remove as much ink as the previous 4. I'm growing pretty discouraged.

I was hoping to have this removed in one year and now it looks as if two years is more likely. The depression that had subsided is now back in full force. I think it's because as it grows warmer outside, the tattoo becomes harder to hide. Plus I want to go swimming and stuff with my family, but don't want to show the tattoo or expose it to the sun. Not to mention, my wife is the only person that know I even have it.

I feel like I'm stuck with my sessions, but will press on hoping for more results. If i don't see any results after 2 more sessions, I may have to look into a cover up (REALLY don't want to do that) or some other alternative. (Excision?)

Pretty depressed right now. What a HUGE mistake. It has completely ruined the last year of my life .

#8 is today!

I had my 7th session nearly 7 weeks ago and am at the Dr, waiting for #8.

I've seen some decent fading, but realize i still have several sessions to go. I plan on having the 9th session in about 7 weeks. After that, I am going to wait at least 15 weeks before the next one. I want to give my body time to heal and I just want to take a break and enjoy the summer without having to schedule sessions and deal with blisters.

When I look at the pics of when I started, I'm amazed at how far I've come , but the results aren't as noticeable in the later stages.

I'm really hoping to have this removed by this time next year. I think that's relatively realistic. If time goes on and I don't see more results, I may seek other options.

I'm trying to stay positive. The firs lt couple weeks following a session are always the worst for me. The blisters, bandages, inflamed/pink skin... I KNOW the depression will hit me, but still can't prevent it. What a mess we got ourselves in to, huh?

It's encouraging to come to this site and read about other people's journeys and know that I am not alone. Stay strong people!


I took off nearly 9 months to heal (physically and mentally). I go back tomorrow for #9. The break was nice, but it's even harder to go back now.

I have some obvious scarring/pigment issues, but have good fading as well. I'm giving serious consideration to a coverup. I just don't think I can do another summer of trying to hide it from people. I have a closet full of brand new shortsleeved shorts. I don't wrat because I hide the tattoo from people.

I'm going to a new clinic that is 2 hours away instead of 6, which makes a HUGE difference mentally.

They have the new picosure "booster" atrachment that is supposed to break the ink into smaller particles. Apparently during my break, I missed that new breakthrough. So please educate me, if you know anything about it. Well, wish me luck


Well, this trip was a waste of money. During the treatment, the skin didn't frost at all. It had frosted in all previous treatments. It also didn't blister at all, like it had previously. It's now been 4 days and my skin is nearly healed; just slightly enflamed. It's never healed that fast before. I'm sure the new Dr didn't have the laser turned up nearly enough. I will likely return in 6 weeks and tell him to CRANk IT UP.
Chicago Oculoplastic Surgeon

Dr Ritacca has been great. He is very experienced and fully explains the process and his reasoning behind his method(s)

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
4 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
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5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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