After living with that old or unwanted tattoo for long enough, it’s finally the right time to get it removed. There are surely lots of questions to consider including what factors may affect laser tattoo removal success?
When tattoo ink is injected into your skin, your body’s immune system goes into protection mode and attacks the invasive ink pigment with macrophages that try to remove the ink from your system by catching and consuming it. But some macrophages over-eat and become so full of ink that they can’t move, keeping them where they are, and the massive amount of ink they consumed is visible through your skin as a tattoo. Laser tattoo removal works by using specially designed lasers that break up the ink particles with bursts of energy created through hyper focused light waves. Each different color of ink absorbs a different wavelength of light – when that light wave hits the ink, it shatters it into small pieces to flush the macrophages out.
Tattoos fade over time, making aged pigments easier to remove. Ink is embedded in the second layer of the skin, the dermis. The older the tattoo, the less the amount of ink left and the quicker it is to remove with a laser.
Studies have proved the counteractive effects smoking has on laser tattoo removal. Patients who smoked had a 70% less success rate compared to their counterparts. This is directly linked to the effects smoking has on healing wounds.
If you have used a professional for your tattoo, the amount of ink is usually denser and resides deeper in the skin. However, if your tattoo was applied by an amateur, much less ink is typically used and it’s likely to be uneven.
Location of Tattoo
As a rule of thumb, the closer the tattoo is to the heart, the faster it can be removed by laser. Parts of the body with higher blood amounts and greater lymph node count, such as the neck and face, are easier to work with. The lower the tattoo on the body, the tougher it becomes to remove.
Those with darker skin tones are susceptible to tissue damage that can lead to scarring. Ink located under a scar is harder to remove and often calls for a combination of alternative treatments.
Size of the Tattoo
A more subtle but crucial factor is the size of the tattoo. It has been proven that tattoos with diameters of more than twelve inches saw the least amount of success after ten sessions.
The immune system plays a vital role in the success of the tattoo removal in that it’s responsible for eliminating the ink successfully—Harvard medical school details how the macrophages destroy all foreign substances in the body, including the tattoo ink.
When tattoos are covered up, the new layer is typically darker and more dense than the layer underneath. This can make removal more difficult and require more sessions to remove completely.
To begin your laser tattoo removal procedure and for more info and to schedule an appointment, contact us today 561-249-2819