Kathy Anne Resasco
The Palomar Q-YAG 5™ System is a
high-powered laser that removes unwanted tattoos and pigmented
lesions (sunspots, freckles, etc.). It emits a highly focused beam
of laser light, which passes harmlessly through the outer layer of
the skin and is absorbed primarily by the tattoo ink or the excess
pigment within the lesion.
As the light is absorbed, it is quickly converted to heat. The
sudden rise in temperature within the treatment target fractures the
ink or pigment into tiny particles. Tattoo ink fragments are carried
away by the lymphatic system, while pigmented lesions are naturally
shed from the skin one to two weeks after treatment.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What Kinds of Tattoos and Pigmented
Lesions Can Be Treated?
A tattoo's color, depth, and the chemical composition of the ink all
affect how it responds to laser light. Black, red, dark orange, and
dark blue tattoos will usually respond relatively quickly to
treatments with the Palomar Q-YAG 5. However, green, purple, brown,
light orange, and light blue colors may require more treatments. In
general, most tattoos can be successfully treated, given a
sufficient number of treatments.
A wide range of pigmented lesions can also be treated, including
freckles, sunspots and many brown-colored birthmarks.
Does It Hurt?
Since the laser light selectively targets the undesired ink or
pigment, other tissues remain largely unaffected, and therefore most
report little discomfort. Many people compare the sensation of the
pulses entering the skin to the snap of a rubber band. If such
"snaps" are too uncomfortable, your physician may offer you local
anesthesia, but this is usually not necessary.
What Happens After Treatment?
Immediately after laser exposure, the treated areas may become
whitish-colored and swell slightly. This whiteness subsides in about
The swelling may last longer, but can be reduced by cooling the skin
with an ice pack. The tattoo or pigmented lesion will fade over the
next few weeks.