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Piecewise

Hello. A radiation therapist with a question

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Since the forum won't let me post this in General discussion for whatever reason, I'll just ask it here.

I'm a radiation therapist, which means that I treat cancer patients with high dose radiation. Part of that process involves placing triangulation tattoos on their body, basically just small black circle tattoos that we use to triangulate and target their treatment. We do this because it is extremely important to be accurate in our treatment and thus we need permanent, immovable reference points. My question is this:  Does anyone here know of a good fluorescent "Black Light" tattoo ink?  I ask because it would be very helpful to have an ink that could provide a good glowing dot when under blacklight. Not only would it limit the visibility of the tattoos for people who don't want to have them, but it would allow us to more easily mark people with dark skin or who have many natural spots that could be easily mistaken for a tattoo mark.

One of my older colleges tried this years and years ago, but he could never find an ink that showed up brightly enough through the skin of anyone who wasn't very fair in complexion.

tattoo.png

Edited by Piecewise

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A lot of the glow ink isn't considered safe because it is carcinogenic, but for a medical application where you're getting zapped with radiation and chemo, it is pretty intriguing. I hope there is something out there.

Would adding a step to prep protocol to paint the existing tattoo with glow paint help you at all?

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I suggest you find a local shop that does this stile. Those discussions are not allowed on here. Good luck. Maybe someone on here can suggest a shop near you doing this stile.

Sent from my Le Pan TC802A using Tapatalk

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1 hour ago, Tornado7 said:

A lot of the glow ink isn't considered safe because it is carcinogenic, but for a medical application where you're getting zapped with radiation and chemo, it is pretty intriguing. I hope there is something out there.

Would adding a step to prep protocol to paint the existing tattoo with glow paint help you at all?

 

For the record, I'm quite iffy on the idea of them being carcinogenic. Articles such as this

http://genyu.net/2012/12/11/shedding-light-on-uv-tattoos/

Explain that it does not contain any known carcinogens, simply things whose carcinogenic properties are unknown. And frankly, a freckle-sized dot of ink is gonna be a lot less dangerous regardless of what's in it than the treatment itself.

 

But the idea with glow paint isn't a bad one. We actually can do such things already using highlighter. Standard yellow highlighter doesn't show up well on the skin but glows brightly under blacklight. The difficulty is that treatments last as long as 6 weeks, so it results in a lot of reapplying depending on the area its on and every reapplication is a chance to make a small mistake. And those mistakes can compound, resulting in treatment that is off target. Our margins for error are 5 mm; so even a little bit is generally not acceptable

 

1 hour ago, pidjones said:

I suggest you find a local shop that does this stile. Those discussions are not allowed on here. Good luck. Maybe someone on here can suggest a shop near you doing this stile.

Sent from my Le Pan TC802A using Tapatalk
 

 

If its a problem, I'll stop. But I figured that this didn't constitute a break in the rules mainly because I'm not talking about traditional tattooing. I'm not gonna take trade secrets and start using them against tattoo artists; I'm just gonna treat patients.

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This is different altogether and the discussion should be allowed in my opinion. OP is NOT looking for a career as a tattooer and is simply trying to better someone's cancer treatment. 

To the op-  this forum will be of little help. It used to be populated by tattooers but most left and you are just reaching collectors here who won't be able to answer your question. 

I suggest calling or stopping by a legit shop and asking them. They will be much more help than anyone that frequents this board. 

Best of luck. 

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10 minutes ago, Rob I said:

This is different altogether and the discussion should be allowed in my opinion. OP is NOT looking for a career as a tattooer and is simply trying to better someone's cancer treatment. 

To the op-  this forum will be of little help. It used to be populated by tattooers but most left and you are just reaching collectors here who won't be able to answer your question. 

I suggest calling or stopping by a legit shop and asking them. They will be much more help than anyone that frequents this board. 

Best of luck. 

I agree.

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17 hours ago, bongsau said:

Out of curiousity...how do you go about marking the triangulation tattoos on people that are covered in tattoo?  

I could imagine that using UV ink might work in this case as well...? 

@Piecewise if you let us know where you're based, someone may be able to direct you to a place nearby where you may get actual help with your question. Good Luck and feel free to keep us updated! Quite an interesting topic methinks...

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On 2/22/2017 at 2:22 PM, bongsau said:

Out of curiousity...how do you go about marking the triangulation tattoos on people that are covered in tattoo?  

Well, it really depends on where the tattoos are and where we need to treat. Our triangulation tattoos are placed on specific parts of the body, usually. Places where the skin is fairly tight against the bones or not very prone to moving. For instance, if you feel from your armpit down the side of your ribs you'll find a place around the middle of your torso where there's very little muscle or fat, and the skin is very close to the ribs. If you go towards the midline from there, you'll find that this generally aligns with the xiphoid process, the very tip of your sternum.  So we would tattoo once on either side and then again right on midline on the sternum. And that could be used for treatments basically anywhere in the torso because we would align to those tattoos and then shift the field to the actual treatment area.

But if someone is tattooed in those areas there are a few ways we could handle it. The first is the simplest: just tattoo over it. If a small black dot would be visible through the tattoo, then we're fine.  Second, we tattoo somewhere they don't have tattoos; this can make things more tricky but its doable. The third way, would depend on their tattoo, but if they have a tattoo with specific things on it (Ie an image of something rather than an abstract pattern) Then we can use some detail of the tattoo as our marking point. Use what's there.   But as Omeletta said, UV ink would also be very useful in those kinds of instances because then we could just put a glowing dot in and not worry about tattoos they have.

Although to be honest, most of my patients are of the age where they generally didn't get tattoos, so it doesn't come up too often.

On 2/23/2017 at 7:38 AM, omeletta said:

I could imagine that using UV ink might work in this case as well...? 

@Piecewise if you let us know where you're based, someone may be able to direct you to a place nearby where you may get actual help with your question. Good Luck and feel free to keep us updated! Quite an interesting topic methinks...

 

I'm based in Las Vegas, Nevada. I'm going to go to a place called "Diversity Tattoo" later this week and have them try a few inks on me, to get an idea of what the best case (Ie fair skin) looks like.

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