The frustration with typical tattoo removal has been that it can take up to 10-15 treatments to remove that unwanted ink from your skin. With the recommended 2 month interval between treatments, this can take over a year to get to your final results.
The limiting factor when treating a tattoo has been that white gas bubbles develop under the skin which inhibit the laser from being effective. Physicians noted though, that after 20 minutes, the bubbles were gone, allowing for another treatment. This waiting 20 minutes and repeating the treatment is called the R20 protocol, and allows for 4 treatments in one day. The downside is that it requires over an hour of being in the doctor’s office and can be longer if the laser or doctor is busy when the 20 minutes are up. It was consistently reported by the patients that the subsequent treatments on the same day after the first one were much more comfortable.
An exciting new protocol, called the RO protocol, now eliminates the 20 minute wait between treatments. By placing a fluid on the skin, perfluorodecalin, the white gas bubbles are eliminated almost instantly, thereby allowing the 4 treatments to be performed in rapid succession. A study showed this treatment was safe and that the tattoos were removed faster than with the one treatment per session standard protocol.
So now, tattoo removal is faster with only 2-4 sessions, and more comfortable with the RO protocol. Please call the Aesthetic Clinique for your tattoo removal evaluation. We use the Spectra Q switched laser which is, in our opinion, the safest laser for tattoo removal on the market.
Dr. Steven Weiner is a Board Certified Facial Plastic Surgeon practicing in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida, between Destin and Panama City Beach, Florida. After laying down his scalpel in 2005 he has devoted his practice to Lasers and Injectables.