Occasionally a test spot must be performed with the PicoSure laser prior to beginning treatments for tattoo removal. There are several reasons why we might want to do a test spot. Firstly, if a light colored ink is suspected to have a high titanium metal content then it might be good to test it first in order to ensure that it doesn’t turn grey or darker. Luckily, this phenomenon is quite rare; however, if the test spot becomes dark or the ink color changes then a conversation regarding strategy must take place. If it is determined that the ink will not come out then the patient must be given other choices to consider such as a cover up, excision or pigment camouflage. Additionally, a test spot is sometimes required when a patient wants to see how their particular ink will respond and whether or not they believe they can withstand the treatment regimen. I always comply with a test spot request, at no charge, just to ensure both myself and the patient agree that there’s a high probability that their outcome will be successful.
For benign pigmented lesion removal on the face (melasma, freckles), a test spot is also recommended and always a good idea to prove that the whole area will clear as desired. In other words, when in doubt, request a test spot be performed. Your final decision can be based upon the results and you will feel more confident going in. If you live in the Austin area and would like a test spot on your tattoo, I can be reached by phone @ 512-479-9997 or just stop by my NEW location in Austin, TX: Austin Medspa on W. 6th St.