The current standard in Milwaukee for laser tattoo removal is use of the q-switched laser. Remove A Tattoo in Mequon, WI uses the Aatanza Trinity system, consisting of a Nd:YAG (Duality) and Ruby (Eternity) lasers. These are q-switched lasers that deliver a very fast (6000 Picosecond), powerful blast of energy to the tattoo ink to shatter it. The body then carries the ink away. It is a very effective laser system for removing tattoos.
Every so often I am asked by patients what I think of the Picosure laser system by Cynosure. My answer is that it is mostly hype. The web site at Picosure states that because it is using even shorter picosecond pulses than traditional q-switched lasers, it makes the ink “like dust” and it is easier for the body to carry away.
It claims this “can lead” to faster tattoo clearance. At this time there are no head-to-head studies that show it is any faster than traditional q-switched lasers. Three things however are clear; first, it may be great on green and blacks, but because this is an Alexandrite laser, it can’t touch reds. Reds are a very common tattoo color. That means you are going to either not have reds treated with the Picosure or they will need to wheel in some other laser to treat the red. The Duality easily handles red ink. Second, because this is an Alexandrite laser, it has a higher chance of damaging your melanocytes if you have darker skin, much like the Ruby laser. Thus removing a tattoo in darker skinned people with a Picosure could lead to more post-treatment hypopigmentation. The third thing is that the Picosure treatments may cost more (because the machine is very expensive). There is an interesting article here that looks at the evidence vs the hype and concludes that current picosecond lasers are not expected to have any better clearance than the current gold standard of Q-switched lasers. My final comment is that all in all, I feel the hype outweighs the reality. Living in the Milwaukee area and looking to have your tattoo removed? Give us a call today at Remove A Tattoo in Mequon 414-617-2849.