Which parameters should be considered while choosing a tattoo removal laser?
When choosing a tattoo removal laser, several technical parameters should be considered in order to achieve the most effective and safe treatment.
- Wavelength: Different wavelengths are absorbed by different pigments in the skin. For tattoo removal, the most common wavelengths used are Q-switched Nd: YAG (1064nm) and Q-switched Ruby (694nm) for black and blue ink and Q-switched Alexandrite (755nm) for black, blue, and green ink.
- Pulse Duration: The shorter the pulse duration, the higher the peak energy and the more effective the laser will be at breaking up the tattoo pigment. Q-switched lasers typically have a pulse duration of nanoseconds (billionths of a second).
- Fluence: It is the amount of energy delivered per unit area and it is measured in joules per square centimetre (J/cm^2). High fluence can cause thermal damage to the surrounding tissue.
- Spot size: It’s the diameter of the laser beam. Larger spot size will cover a larger area of the skin but may not be as precise as a smaller spot size.
- Repetition rate: It’s the number of laser pulses per second. Higher repetition rate can cover a larger area of the skin but may also increase the risk of thermal damage.
- Cooling system: It is important to protect the epidermis during the laser treatment, so the laser should have built-in cooling systems such as a cooling gel or a cooling handpiece.
It’s important to note that the individual’s skin type and tattoo characteristics should also be considered while choosing a laser device, and a consultation with a laser specialist or a dermatologist is recommended.