Granulomatous tattoo reaction induced by intense pulse light treatment

Athanasia Tourlaki, Vinicio Boneschi, Diego Tosi, Paolo Pigatto, Lucia Brambilla

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Cosmetic tattooing involves implantation of pigments into the dermis in order to create a permanent makeup. Here, we report a case of sarcoidal granulomatous reaction to old cosmetic tattoos after an intense pulsed light (IPL) treatment for facial skin rejuvenation. We consider this case as a peculiar example of photo-induced reaction to tattoo. In addition, we hypothesize that an underlying immune dysfunction was present, and acted as a predisposing factor for this unusual response, as the patient had suffered from an episode of acute pulmonary sarcoidosis 15 years before. Overall, our observation suggests that IPL treatment should be used cautiously in patients with tattoos, especially when a history of autoimmune disease is present.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)275-276
Number of pages2
JournalPhotodermatology Photoimmunology and Photomedicine
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2010


  • Granulomatous reaction
  • Intense pulsed light
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Tattoo

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology
  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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