The Benefits and Risks of Laser Tattoo Removal

It is important for individuals who have a tattoo that they wish to remove to consider both the benefits and risks of laser tattoo removal – this will allow them to make the best decision for their situation. This article outlines the primary risks and benefits of laser tattoo removal.

Tattoo removal

What is laser tattoo removal?

Laser tattoo removal is a procedure that utilizes high-powered lasers that penetrate deep into the skin and are able to permanently demolish the ink particles within the cells that give the color to the tattoo. There are different types of lasers that may be used to remove tattoos, depending on the color of ink of the tattoo.

The procedure for the tattoo removal will depend on the characteristics of the tattoo and the individual person. Most people will require a series of short sessions 1-2 months apart to remove the tattoo, although the exact number of sessions cannot be predicted in advance. Usually 5-10 sessions are required, although up to 20 may be required in some cases. The variability depends on many factors, such as the size, color, location and age of the tattoo.

With improved technology in recent years, the outcomes of laser tattoo removal have become more positive by increasing efficacy and reducing the risk of adverse effects.

Laser Tattoo Removal - How a Tattoo is Removed

Benefits of laser tattoo removal

Laser tattoo removal is a permanent procedure that will completely remove the tattoo from the skin.

There are many reasons that an individual may want to removal a tattoo from their body. These may include regret or dissatisfaction with the appearance of the tattoo on their body. Others may wish to remove a tattoo to improve employment prospects, due to the negative stigma of tattoos and their association with unprofessionalism in the workplace.

Risks of laser tattoo removal

Complete removal of a tattoo can sometimes be difficult, particularly for people who have dark colored skin or who want to remove a tattoo with color. Some people may also notice changes in the texture or color of their skin following laser treatment.

For the vast majority of individuals who undergo laser tattoo removal, a series of laser treatments is required to remove the tattoo completely. This increases the exposure to laser light, thus increasing the risk of associated complications. Additionally, the series of treatments can become very costly.

The procedure can also be uncomfortable and may cause the individual to experience pain in the area treated. To minimize this, an injection to provide local anesthesia may be provided prior to treatment.

Additionally, the laser light has the potential to harm the eyes and affect eyesight. It should be recommended for individuals to wear protective eye goggles for this reason.

Infection of the skin can sometimes occur due to laser tattoo removal, particularly when an area of the treatment is neglected. It is important for patients to protect the area of skin that has been treated – this will reduce the risk of bacterial entry and subsequent infection. Adequate aftercare following the treatment is essential for this reason.

Risk minimization

The aftercare following laser removal of a tattoo is essential to minimize the risk of complications. Keeping the skin clean by washing it in an appropriate manner regularly in the days following the procedure is recommended. Using a petrolatum ointment can also assist in the healing process of the skin. The area should remain covered with a sterile bandage for approximately one week after each session.



Further Reading

Last Updated: Feb 26, 2019

Yolanda Smith

Written by

Yolanda Smith

Yolanda graduated with a Bachelor of Pharmacy at the University of South Australia and has experience working in both Australia and Italy. She is passionate about how medicine, diet and lifestyle affect our health and enjoys helping people understand this. In her spare time she loves to explore the world and learn about new cultures and languages.


Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:

  • APA

    Smith, Yolanda. (2019, February 26). The Benefits and Risks of Laser Tattoo Removal. News-Medical. Retrieved on February 27, 2024 from

  • MLA

    Smith, Yolanda. "The Benefits and Risks of Laser Tattoo Removal". News-Medical. 27 February 2024. <>.

  • Chicago

    Smith, Yolanda. "The Benefits and Risks of Laser Tattoo Removal". News-Medical. (accessed February 27, 2024).

  • Harvard

    Smith, Yolanda. 2019. The Benefits and Risks of Laser Tattoo Removal. News-Medical, viewed 27 February 2024,


  1. drvenus kumari drvenus kumari India says:

    Nice blog thanks for sharing about "The Benefits and Risks of Laser Tattoo Removal", that was a fascinating and informative article.

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
Post a new comment
You might also like...
Candidates clashed but avoided talk of abortion at 4th GOP primary debate