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Cosmetic Dermatology

Tattoo Regret? Meet our PiQo4 laser for tattoo removal.

Posted on: October 20th, 2017 by Dr. Jennifer Herrmann

You found the cutest off-shoulder top to wear with cut-offs for brunch. What’s not so cute? The green shamrock and italicized “lucky” spanning your right shoulder. Yes, we’ve all done things in youth that we regret today, but for unwanted tattoos, there is now a better solution for their removal: the PiQo4 picosecond laser.

Using lasers for ridding tattoos isn’t new. But to date, tattoo removal has remained largely inefficient. Tattoos with challenging colors could only be partially removed, leaving an even less desired faded smear, and up to 20 treatments was necessary for semi-satisfactory results.

The good news is that advancing technology has produced a new generation of tattoo removal lasers that more completely and quickly remove ink. Enters the PiQo4 picosecond laser for tattoo removal. How does this laser work? Let’s first understand exactly what a skin tattoo is.

What is a tattoo?

A tattoo represents a collection of pigment particles placed into the skin by very fine needles. Once deposited, our bodies recognize the particles as “foreign” objects, and our immune system mounts a defensive response. Much like it would react to a splinter penetrating the skin, the immune system attempts to wall off these pigment particle “invaders.” Resident skin cells called macrophages engulf the particles, isolating them from surrounding cells. Overtime, as macrophages die and are replaced, small particle bits are removed internally, and the tattoo image looses its clarity.

How does the PiQo4 laser work for removing?

The PiQo4 laser targets colored pigment particles. When the laser is fired, very fast picosecond bursts of energy are transferred to the pigment particles, immediately shattering them. This initially breaks bigger rock-like ink particles into pebbles, and subsequent treatments break these pebbles into sand and then sand into dust. Because the dust particles are so small, our bodies process these particles for internal elimination and the tattoo disappears.

What makes the PiQo4 laser better than competing lasers?

  1. Because the PiQo4 uses picosecond energy, it can blast away pigment particles most efficiently. Very few lasers can reduce ink particles to specks of dust, which our bodies can quickly clear. Because the PiQo4 does this well, it requires fewer treatments for tattoo clearance. Fewer treatments saves our patients’ time and means a more cost-effective strategy!
  2. All colors. Because the laser has multiple hand pieces specific for all colors, it successfully removes even the most challenging hues like green, orange, and neons.
  3. Larger target area. The PiQo4 laser has a larger target field meaning that it treats large tattoos faster and reaches deeper into the skin to target even the most professionally placed tattoo particles.
  4. More comfortable and less downtime. By delivering energy over the period of picoseconds, the PiQo4 laser more precisely targets pigment only and spares surrounding skin. Much less heat is generated than older tattoo removal lasers. This means more comfortable treatments and less social downtime as your skin heals.

Let’s be real. While tattoos on Angelina Jolie look understated-chic, most of us don’t have an on-call stylist to maximize their appeal. If you have an unwanted tattoo, schedule an appointment with one of our board-certified dermatologists to better understand your PiQo4 tattoo removal options.

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