What to do if a person having freckle removal has tattoos?
Can you have freckle removal laser or IPL if you have tattoos? The answer to this question is yes and no. The freckles should only be removed around the tattoo. The freckle removal device should go as close as possible to the tattoo, but not overlap.
One has to be careful when treating a patient with tattoos from freckle removal. The IPL (or BBL), the most effective method for treating freckles should never be used on a tattoo. The problem is that the tattoo ink would be very attractive to the wavelength of the IPL and the energy would be too high and the tattoo would probably blister and potentially scar. I have seen a case of a tattoo on a chest which was treated with IPL (in a misguided attempt to remove the tattoo) and this caused keloid scarring within the tattoo.
How do we avoid problems?
The way to avoid problems is to either cover the tattoo, or to just make sure that the device does not touch the tattoo.
Intricate tattoos with small “holes”
Sometimes when a tattoo is very intricate with smaller areas inside the tattoo where we have to try to get the freckles out of those small holes. If these holes are too small, then the IPL head will be too large, and another device eg a pigment laser, which has a smaller spot size, might need to be used.
Extra Treatment Advised
Most often with freckle removal, at least 2 treatments are required. However, when treating around tattoos, the patient and doctor should be prepared for extra treatments to get a more polished and perfect result around the tattoo.