How do I prepare for a tattoo removal procedure?
Your surgeon will provide thorough preoperative instructions and answer any questions you may have before your surgery.
In advance of your treatment, your surgeon may ask you to:
- Stop smoking before undergoing surgery to promote better healing.
- Avoid taking aspirin, certain anti-inflammatory drugs, and some herbal medications that can cause increased bleeding.
- Hydrate before and after surgery for safe recovery.
- Wear sunscreen and avoid the sun.
- Avoid pretreatment shaving, waxing, or exfoliating.
- Avoid tanning and spray tans prior to your procedure.
Laser tattoo removal is usually an outpatient procedure, and you are usually able to return to your normal activities immediately after the treatment. With surgical tattoo removal, you’ll need to arrange for someone to drive you home after treatment.
What can I expect the day of my tattoo removal?
Be sure to consult with your surgeon before your treatment so you have the most accurate expectations.
Laser Tattoo Removal
- You will likely have your tattoo removal procedure in an office-based setting.
- Your surgeon may apply some form of local anesthesia, such as a topical anesthetic cream, before treatment.
- You will experience some pain during your treatment; however many patients describe the pain as tolerable and feeling like a “grease splatter” or a “slap” from a rubber band.
- Most laser tattoo removal sessions take only a few minutes to complete but may be longer depending on the nature of your particular tattoo.
- Your surgeon will follow the treatment plan discussed with you.
- After your procedure is completed, you will be able to return home and resume your normal activities.
Tattoo Removal Surgery
- You may have your surgical tattoo removal in an accredited hospital, free-standing ambulatory facility, or office-based surgical suite.
- Your surgeon will give you a local anesthesia.
- Your surgeon will excise the tattoo area and either close the wound with stitches or use a skin graft.
- Once the surgery is complete, your surgeon may prescribe medication to help with healing and pain.