The removal of tattoos is performed with many different types of laser treatments. Laser treatment usually requires a few to multiple treatment sessions as many as 20 and the response to this treatment is variable depending upon the colors of the tattoo, age of the tattoo, and pigmentation of the patient. The NYC Dermatology and Laser Center of New York utilizes various lasers for tattoo removal. Different lasers are necessary to treat different colors within a tattoo. These include the Q-switched ruby laser, the Q-switched Alexandrite laser, and the Q-switched Nd:YAG lasers.A local anesthetic is given to reduce thediscomfort during the treatment. Multiple treatment sessions are usually required. We generally treat our patients at 1- 3 month intervals.
Cosmetic tattoos, which include tattoos of eyebrows, eyeliner, lips, and scars,are difficult to treat. Many of these cosmetic tattoos contain iron oxide which would prohibit the use of Q-switched lasers which we generally use for decorative and traumatic tattoos. Laser resurfacing with the carbon dioxide, Erbium or the Fraxel Re:pair lasers may be necessary with many treatments to clear these cosmetic tattoos.