Hi I regretted having them and travelling further each day was used as reason to persuade me. I weakened and trying now to find somewhere in merseyside that will remove them at reasonable cost. Oh radiologist dr also said imp,to have them as may get lung cancer and need them. Im only stage ll A ? I want them removed esp one on chest .
Just wondering what the answer was when you spoke about avoiding tattoos. I am really not bothered about the pain but I absolutely hate tattoos!
I am in Australia and had my radiation done at the cancer centre in my home town. It's ran by The Alfred Hospital. I had my rads done last May. During my mapping, they used existing freckles. I had 2 every small dots placed under my arm but that's it. Between my breasts they used tape and magic marker. If you don't want tattoo's you should have the choice. I actually asked them what happens when someone who is covered in tattoos needs radiation. The told me they line the person up using the "snakes head" or whatever the tattoo might be. Sorry, am banging on.. my point is that here at least we have the option of tattoo or not.
I have never had a tattoo before either.
The only one I felt was the one in the midde, probably because that is the boneiest bit, the other two at each side I did not even feel. Honestly it is over in second and I can say that as one who hates hates hates needles xxxxx
Hello Alibobs, don't have a sleepless night as you don't need to worry or stress - the tattoos don't hurt, just like a tiny scratch and I couldn't even find mine!! Mind you, I do wear glasses.
They don't even look as large as a blackhead, but tiny tiny pin pricks. Do hope you get on ok - xxx
I, too, was stupidly worried about the tattooing. I'm a true coward! Can say, hand on heart, that it was painless. And took just moments. Tattoo makes it sound more than it is. I had 3 marks - one on my sternum and one each side of my rib cage. They are barely noticeable. In fact, the ones at the sides, I need a mirror to see them. They are the size of a felt tip pen tip mark. The radio team need the marks to be in an exact position, so they are very careful. I found them to be very considerate too. Bearing in mind, all the other hurdles we have to jump to get through treatment, the tattooing process doesn't even register!
Trudy I refused them so they used ultraviolet ones, that aren't visible day to day. The process is the same, so I can only guess it must be more expensive & thus not offered. Another lady in my rads group had stickers instead of tats. As ever, just a postcode lottery x
Thanks for your lovely reply. N.A.P,
You are right when you say we do not kick up enough fuss. Is it worth liaising with PALS at the said hospital ? It's been a while now since i had RT, 6 years nearly. I had heard that markers could be pen-marked, but i was never given the option. I think its worrying for them to have the marks fade off.
You're right, in the middle of everything else it is such a trivial thing but years later, they are like psychological scars on me.
Laser tattoo removals are pretty well established by now, offered by cosmetic skin treatment centres or tattoo/piercing studios. They work by breaking down the molecules of the dye into pieces small enough to be cleaned up by your immune system. RT tattoos can often be removed within 1-3 treatments, but obviously your body needs some time to do the cleaning up part, so they should fade gradually over weeks and months. Immediately after the treatment you will probably have a small blood blister or wound (max size of the treated area), but normally they heal without scars. As always with medical treatments,there is the disclaimer that every person reacts differently... I don't see a reason not to try it.
As far as skin-coloured tattoos go. You might want to consider that tattoos do not tan, if that is factor in your case.
I'd like to ask you a favour (for lack of a better word). Please let your cancer treatment centre, oncologists, radiologists etc know how you feel about these tattoos. Technically it is absolutely possible to do RT without tattooed marks, but radiologist like them and often do not offer alternatives, therefore essentially forcing patients to have them (if they want RT). They seem to be able to convince themselves that this acceptable, because of the benefits, because the dots are small, because cancer patients have bigger problems and don't protest enough. I did protest, and found myself being talked down like a six-year-old who doesn't want to go to the dentist, kind of aggressively, too.
This practice is unlikely to change unless we patients make some noise. Please, let's change it! Thank you, and good luck.
Yeah, I was thinking along the lines of having another skin coloured tattoo to camouflage it
That option sounds the best to me .
I'll have to research some places where I could go, I'm not very tattoo-wise, lol
Wouldnt it be a good idea if the actual radiotherapy dept could offer this second skin coloured tattoo at the end of treatment !
Hey, Lucie, thanks for your reply.
I never thought of laser removal. Yes please, let me know your end result, it will be interesting to see if it works. I hope it doesnt leave a scar.
Ive thought about turning it into a tattoo of something else, like a small cross or a star but I dont think I'd like that either incase it shows with tops i may wear.
Hi, I just wondered if anyone finds the black tattoos from radiotherapy quite annoying?
Mine were done by a ' novice ', it was her first time doing the tattoo and they are quite large.
Obviously I cant see the two on either side of my chest but the one in the centre I see every day.
I've seen someone else's before and they're barely noticeable.
Mine look like big blackheads that could do with a good squeeze.
Anyway, I just wondered if anyone has tried to get rid of theirs and how ?
Is there such thing as a white tattoo that can cover it ?
Thanks , Trudy x