A tragic accident left a young woman severely scarred.
Plastic surgeons told Basma Hameed not much could be done.
But she decided to try and ended up developing a cutting-edge technique for camouflaging scars and other disfiguring marks.
Now she's helping others like her client Anna Wuzter regain confidence with a breakthrough tattoo technology that works.
Wuzter's nightmare started 20 years ago.
A dentist in Poland used what she believes were black market chemicals in a root canal.
The life-threatening infection that followed nearly destroyed the bottom half of her face.
"It was unbelievable pain," Wuzter said. "My bone was just eaten."
She underwent 57 surgeries including bone, muscle and skin grafts to recreate her jaw, teeth, lips and chin.
Wuzter said the pale skin grafts and reddish scar tissue brought hurtful stares and unwanted attention.
"I can't accept myself this way," she said.
Wuzter reached out to Paramedical Micro-Pigmentation specialist Basma Hameed in Beverly Hills.
Using a proprietary blend of mineral pigments, Hameed mastered a way to camouflage scars and discoloration.
"Because I did my own face," Hameed said, "I was able to see day-to-day changes."
At just 2, a kitchen accident involving hot oil disfigured Hameed.
She spent years experimenting on her appearance.
"It's not the needles. It's not the pigments. It's experience and how deep you can go into the scar tissue," said Hameed. "We've never had any complications nor side effects. Just improvement."
Hameed has helped clients with port-wine stain birthmarks as well as scars on the forehead and eyebrow.
Some patients may require three to five treatments, others dozens more. It depends on the type of scar tissue. While her work focuses on the surface, Hameed believes the healing goes much deeper.
"The treatment can actually improve their life and make them a little more comfortable in their skin," said Hameed.
The cost can vary from the low hundreds to several thousands of dollars, depending on the size and depth of the treatment area.
Wuzter knows she'll never look exactly as she did before. But with the help of people like Hameed, she has the strength to carry on.
"It's a huge motivation. Like huge!" said Wuzter.
Tattoo technique helping patients hide scars
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