Permanent tattoo removal is achieved using the Spectra™ Laser which directs concentrated laser energy to carefully break down the inks of a tattoo into tiny fragments without damaging the surrounding skin, allowing the body to naturally dispose of the tiny ink particles. Although not immediate and often requiring repeated treatments, the process is meant to be permanent and usually yields results with less chance of scarring. It works on most tattoos – professional, amateur, cosmetic, traumatic or coloured. Certain tattoo pigments, such as yellows, greens and fluorescent inks are more challenging to treat than the darker blacks and blues because they have absorption spectrums that fall outside or on the edge of the emission spectrum available in the respective tattoo removal laser.
To achieve successful laser tattoo removal, selective photothermolysis (SPTL) for the selective destruction of tattoo pigments depends on four factors:
- The colour of the laser light must penetrate sufficiently deep into the skin to reach the tattoo pigment.
- The colour of the laser light must be more highly absorbed by the tattoo pigment than the surrounding skin. Different tattoo pigments therefore require different laser colours.
- The time duration (pulse duration) of the laser energy must be very short, so that the tattoo pigment is heated to fragmentation temperature before its heat can dissipate to the surrounding skin. Otherwise, heating of the surrounding tissue can cause burns or scars.
- Sufficient energy must be delivered during each laser pulse to heat the pigment to fragmentation. If the energy is too low, pigment will not fragment and no removal will take place.
A local anaesthetic cream is applied before the procedure commences. Post laser creams are applied to the treated tattoo to reduce the risk of scaring and to enhance healing.