When the cure for a bad tattoo is an unregulated laser · thewalrus. ca

I n late 2015, Ana Alves decided to get rid of one of her tattoos: a red rose with green and yellow leaves on top of a black tribal pattern, placed midway up her left thigh. Unique tattoo ideas for guys After researching tattoo-removal options, she settled on SpaMedica, a plastic-surgery clinic and spa in Toronto’s Yorkville neighbourhood. Awesome leg tattoos for guys In the waiting room, a plush banquette curves to meet a mahogany desk staffed by well-dressed receptionists.


Mens sleeve tattoo designs black and grey A small statue sits in one corner, and the soothing gurgle of a brook emanates from a speaker. Amazing 3d tattoos that will boggle your mind It’s almost peaceful enough for patients to forget they’re about to have lasers blasted at their flesh.

This is Alves’s third treatment at SpaMedica. Awesome heart tattoos What was once her tattoo is now a swirl of muted pinpoints, slightly more distinct than a colourful bruise. Cool small wrist tattoos Nadia Hammoud, a registered nurse, starts by injecting lidocaine into the tattooed area with a small three-pronged needle. Forearm sleeve tattoo ideas for guys Once the area is numb, Hammoud uses a laser to trace the tattoo’s outline. Best guy tattoos ever The sound of a laser hitting skin is a muted, rapid clicking, not unlike the syncopated rhythm of a sewing machine. Amazing 3d tattoos 2013 hd The whole procedure is over in twenty minutes.

A tattoo is created by injecting pigment into the dermis, the second layer of skin tissue. Great tattoo ideas with meaning for guys The pigment remains concentrated even as the epidermis peels away during healing. Half sleeve tattoo ideas for guys In laser tattoo removal, the operator uses a laser beam to break down the ink particles below the skin. Unique mens tattoos Those particles then disintegrate naturally in the weeks between removal sessions.

Laser tattoo removal leaves patients at risk of hyperpigmentation (skin darkening). Cool tattoos for mens arms It can also cause scarring or severe burns. Lower back tattoo designs The practice is not regulated by the government or by any professional body, and there’s no way to determine a clinic’s credibility. Most popular female tattoo designs Health Canada decides which machines can be sold for laser removal, and training courses are included in the purchase. Awesome tattoos for guys But the only legal requirement for operating lasers in exchange for money is a business licence.

In 2014, eighteen women came forward claiming that a “revolutionary laser-free technology” treatment offered by a Montreal-area clinic, Bye Bye Tattoo, had given them second-degree burns. Awesome guy tattoo designs The women were left with permanently raised scar tissue—in some cases, in an exact imprint of the tattoo the customer had wanted to remove. Pictures of awesome tattoos That clinic filed for bankruptcy, but the Quebec College of Physicians assembled a working group in early 2015 to examine the aesthetic-medicine industry, which also includes cosmetic injections and laser hair removal. Awesome sleeve tattoos for guys In September 2016, Quebec became the first province to develop regulatory recommendations for the industry.

“It’s surprising that there is no current regulation either for doing or removing tattoos elsewhere in Canada,” says Dr. Awesome little tattoos Yves Robert, secretary of the Quebec College of Physicians. Awesome chest piece tattoos “Tattoo removal shouldn’t cause a bigger problem than the one it’s solving.”

M ore than seven million Canadians have at least one tattoo, according to 2013 data from the Canadian Dermatology Association. Awesome hand tattoos Neither Health Canada nor Statistics Canada keeps track of non-surgical aesthetic procedures, the ill-defined category into which tattooing usually falls. Cool tattoo designs for guys arms But IBISWorld, a market-research company, estimates that in the United States, it’s a $76 million industry, having grown by almost 500 percent over the last decade. Quarter sleeve tattoo ideas for guys And second-hand laser equipment can be bought on eBay or Craigslist for as little as $75.

Stephanie Gorchynski started getting her tattoos removed six years ago. Wrist tattoos for guys ideas She still has the remnants of what she calls “creepy angels” on her back, and birds on her wrist. Cool female back tattoos When she was in university, in the early 2000s, she got a small tattoo on her back. Awesome tattoo sayings for guys A few years later, she decided to have it removed and went to a plastic-surgery clinic in Toronto recommended by a tattoo artist. Amazing tattoo designs for guys At the time, she didn’t know that painkilling cream or lidocaine is usually administered during removal; all the clinic gave her was a stick to bite down on before they aimed the lasers. Do back of neck tattoos hurt It was excruciating. Cute girl chest tattoos “They’re not supposed to rip open layers of skin. Awesome full body tattoos I had severe blisters on my back,” she says.

Gorchynski then tried a clinic that specialized in tattoo removal. Awesome side tattoos for guys They did administer a numbing cream, but the pain was so intense she broke a stress ball and gripped the table hard enough that her nails became lodged in it. Tattoo ideas for guys with meaning Even after this treatment, though, her tattoos showed few signs of fading. Awesome designs for tattoos She had almost given up when she was referred to Shane Bolton. Mens arm sleeve tattoos Bolton, the owner of Toronto’s Fading Fast Tattoo Removal, spent years as a tattoo artist, but the market got increasingly crowded, so he decided to move into removal. Back of neck tattoos He found the laser training course offered with his equipment disappointingly theoretical, so he chose to practise on his own tattoos.

Bolton experimented with settings and motion, seeking the least painful and most effective techniques. Coolest 3d tattoos ever “It was a huge learning curve,” he says. Really small tattoo designs He even let his wife try removing a tattoo from his leg. Mens half sleeve tattoos black and grey “Some people think I’m a little off. Cool ironman tattoos But if I don’t know what it feels like, how do I inflict it on someone else?” His operation grew, and he eventually took on an apprentice. Cool mens tattoos for the arm In Bolton’s view, it would be excessive to require formal medical training, but he does think that, at the very least, the industry should mandate apprenticeships.

O n september 21, 2016, Yves Robert and the rest of the Quebec College of Physicians published a report outlining fourteen recommendations for the regulation of aesthetic medicine. Best small male tattoos Among them: only a qualified medical professional should provide laser treatment for any procedure besides hair removal. Awesome tattoo ideas for guys Certain medical professionals—those who aren’t plastic surgeons, ophthalmologists, or dermatologists—should submit a detailed training plan to the ministry and undergo practical coursework to ensure they can prevent and treat adverse reactions. Side wrist tattoo designs for guys And aestheticians without medical backgrounds should no longer be allowed to operate lasers.

The recommendations will become law if a government ministry—either health or justice—approve them, and the college met with Quebec health minister Gaetan Barrette in October to initiate that approval process. Cool wrist tattoos for guys The Canadian Dermatology Association supports the move toward increased regulation. Awesome bible verse tattoos Its former president, David Zloty, has said it is crucial for public health. Awesome tattoos for men And now that Quebec has drafted its own recommendations, other provinces will have a framework to work from when they try to crack down on the unsafe use of lasers for tattoo removal.

Back at SpaMedica, a hard, chalky layer known as “frosting” has formed over the surface of Alves’s tattoo. Mens half sleeve tattoos forearm This is good, Hammoud says, because it means the skin is responding to the laser treatment. Awesome tattoos for females In six weeks, Alves will be back for her next session. Lower back tattoo designs 2012 She doesn’t want to get rid of her tattoo completely. Awesome meaningful tattoos She just wants it to fade enough that she can get another tattoo in its place—one she plans to keep forever.

Maija Kappler ( @MaijaKappler) is an editor at Intermission who has written for Maisonneuve and the National Post.

Christina Ung is an artist who created the new package design for Twizzlers.

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