Tattoo Removal

Making Youthful Follies Disappear

Dr. Klaus Hoffmann entfernt am 31.07.2013 in der Universitäts Klinik Bochum (Nordrhein-Westfalen) mittels eines neuartigen Lasers bei Sascha Hoffmann ein Tattoo auf der Brust. Die Klinik besitzt einen neuen PicoSure Laser mit dem ein spurloses Entfernen von Tattoos möglich ist. Foto: Marcus Simaitis/dpa (zu dpa/lnw: "Neue Technik zur Tattoo-Entfernung: Wenn Laser auf Pigmente schießen ") +++(c) dpa - Bildfunk+++
Human stain? Removing tattoos is a painful business.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    As tattoos increase in popularity, so too does the demand for their removal. While techniques have improved, gaps in German regulations and possible medical dangers pose concerns for patients.

  • Facts

    Facts

    • Nearly 10 percent of Germans are tattooed.
    • One in 10 of people who have tattoos want to have at least one tattoo removed after 10 years.
    • Even if done correctly, the process is painful, expensive and protracted. If patients discontinue treatment before completion, the tattoo site looks worse than before.
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    Audio

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Fine white scars meander across Uwe Krüger’s tanned lower left arm. For a good while now, Mr. Krüger, a wiry truck driver, has been shedding what he says are the follies of his youth – tattoos on his arms and upper body.

“Ten years ago, they removed a tattoo for me at a hospital in the state of Thuringia. But they didn’t tell me beforehand that it would leave scars like this,” said Mr. Krüger, a wiry man with sporty clothing and an otherwise inconspicuous appearance. “You get them when you’re younger, and later as an adult you get to the point where you say: How dumb I was!”

Mr. Krüger is in the Berlin practice of plastic surgeon Georgios Xydias, where he will have his fourth laser treatment for tattoo removal. That’s Dr. Xydias’ specialty.

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