Start writing
Share this Story

Glow-in-the-dark temporary tattoos could help treat skin cancer

Dr. Elizabeth Yuko is the Health Editor at SheKnows. She is a bioethicist and writer specializing in sexual and reproductive health and the intersection of bioethics and popular culture. She is an adjunct professor of ethics at Fordham ...

New type of ink lets doctors mark skin for surgery & then disappears

Glow-in-the-dark temporary tattoos sound like something you’d get on the boardwalk of the Jersey Shore, but a new type may help save the lives of skin cancer patients.

More: Could your love of chardonnay put you at risk for melanoma?

Typically, people with skin cancer have to wait a few months between being diagnosed via biopsy and the surgical treatment. Currently, doctors mark the spot for possible future surgery using carbon graphite, India ink or fluorescent dye. Each of these pigments can permanently discolor the skin, requiring laser or surgical removal once the skin cancer treatment is completed. They can also cause inflammation around the site of the mark.

More: 10-second test helps you determine your skin cancer risk

But a new, more patient-friendly option is in the works: an ink that glows in certain lights and later totally disappears. In trials with mice, the invisible ink didn’t cause inflammation — another problem with the current methods. We’re all in favor of anything that makes the recovery process easier or less painful, so this is a promising development.

More: My "minor" skin cancer scare was anything but insignificant

Comments
Follow Us

SheKnows Media ‐ Beauty and Style

Hot
New in Health & Wellness
Close

And you'll see personalized content just for you whenever you click the My Feed .

SheKnows is making some changes!

b h e a r d !

Welcome to the new SheKnows Community,

where you can share your stories, ideas

and CONNECT with millions of women.

Get Started