PicoSure® Tattoo Removal Experts in Reno

Frequently Asked Questions

What is PicoSure®?

PicoSure® is the latest advancement in laser technology for safe and effective tattoo removal. Remove tattoos faster with greater efficacy than ever before with the first and only picosecond laser!

How does laser tattoo removal work?

During the PicoSure® treatment, laser energy in the form of a “pressure wave” is gently delivered to the tattoo, targeting the ink and shattering it into tiny particles. The body’s natural processes eliminate the particles, resulting in a lightening of the tattoo ink.

How does the PicoSure® compare to the older tattoo removal technology?

PicoSure® uses the latest technology to remove ink colors and brown spots by delivering ultrashort picosecond pulses of energy into the skin. The pulses create a photomechanical effect, or PressureWave™, that targets ink and brown spots while avoiding unmarked tissue. Unlike traditional Q-switched lasers, which break pigment into pebble-like granules, PressureWave shatters the ink and brown spots into tiny dust-like particles which are more easily eliminated by the body. This results in clearer skin in fewer treatments with improved recovery.

What type of tattoos can be removed with PicoSure®?

PicoSure® can be used to remove a variety of tattoo colors and types. Difficult ink colors, such as blue and green, and previously treated tattoos can effectively be removed with PicoSure®.

How many treatments will tattoo removal require?

With PicoSure®, you will see greater results in fewer treatments. During the consultation, a practitioner will evaluate your tattoo and recommend a realistic treatment regime to help you achieve the best results.

How often will I need treatments?

Typically, it takes about six weeks for the body to start breaking down the ink, and even though the tattoo may appear healed, it is not. Getting treated sooner than that will not remove the tattoo any quicker and can also put you at risk for scarring.

Will I see results after the first treatment?

Every patient and tattoo responds differently. Some patients see improved clearance after the first treatment, while others may take a few treatments to see results. Following the recommended post-treatment protocol will likely improve the results and reduce the chance of adverse events.

What are the limitations after treatment?

We recommend that patients limit their physical activity for the first 24-48 hours to avoid irritation or harm to the treated area. After that, patients can go about their days normally; however, sun exposure should be limited until the treatment area is completely healed.

Can I have only a portion of my tattoo removed?

Yes. PicoSure® delivers energy so precisely that even the smallest areas of a tattoo can be removed without affecting the surrounding tattoo.

I have had 15-20 treatments on my tattoo and it is still there. Can the Picosure® remove the remaining ink?

Unlike traditional lasers, PicoSure® is great at removing previously treated tattoos. PicoSure® can even remove recalcitrant tattoos (tattoos previously treated more than 10 times).

I have permanent makeup. Can you remove it?

We do not recommend treating permanent makeup because there are several risks associated with it. Some cosmetic inks have metallic bases and tend to turn black when treated with the laser. Once this darkening occurs, it takes much longer to remove.

Will I experience any complications from tattoo removal with PicoSure®?

There have been no adverse events reported from PicoSure® treatments. It is important to take care of your tattoo and be compliant with aftercare instructions provided by your practitioner to avoid any unexpected issues.

How much does it cost to have PicoSure® tattoo removal?

The cost of laser tattoo removal depends on several factors, including the size of tattoo and the number of treatments it will require. After your consultation , the practitioner will provide you with a price estimate for the treatment series.

Can I lighten the tattoo to have another one put on top?

Tattoos can be lightened in preparation for a cover-up tattoo. We recommend that you wait six weeks between your last treatment and when you have the new tattoo completed.

Does tattoo removal hurt?

This procedure is slightly more uncomfortable than getting a tattoo; however, it is very fast. Most treatments take between 25-60 seconds. If needed, patients can request numbing cream to apply 30 minutes before the treatment.

Will I blister and scab afterwards?

Although blisters and scabs can be a normal response to tattoo removal, most patients will not experience them. In the event that you do, it is important to not pop or pick at them. If the blister pops on its own, keep the skin over it covered with a healing ointment and gauze to promote healing and prevent scarring.

Does insurance cover tattoo removal treatments?

Most insurance companies will not cover laser tattoo removal because it is considered an elective cosmetic procedure. For your convenience, we offer payment plans and installment options. We would be happy to speak with you about these during the consultation.

I got my tattoo one week ago. Can I have it removed right now?

Tattoo regret can happen at any time, sometimes as early as the day after a tattoo is completed. Because your skin needs time to heal from the tattoo procedure, we require each patient to wait at least six weeks to start the removal process.

Dr. James Murphy

Murphy Plastic Surgery & Medical Spa

Dr. James Murphy is a highly trained, board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon who has been in practice 25 years. He serves patients throughout Reno and Lake Tahoe and is affiliated with several prestigious organizations, including: 

  • American Society of Plastic Surgeons 
  • American College of Surgeons 
  • American Medical Association 
  • Reno Surgical Society

Schedule your consultation today by contacting us online or call (775) 322-3446. Se habla español. If you would like to text us during business hours, we can respond via text to you. You can also send pictures to us with questions.

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