Optoacoustic or photoacoustic imaging (OAI/PAI) is a technology which enables non-invasive visualization of laser-illuminated tissue by the detection of acoustic signals. The combination of “light in” and “sound out” offers unprecedented scalability with a high penetration depth and resolution. The wide range of biomedical applications makes this technology a versatile tool for preclinical and clinical research. Particularly when imaging inflammation, the technology offers advantages over current clinical methods to diagnose, stage, and monitor physiological and pathophysiological processes. This review discusses the clinical perspective of using OAI in the context of imaging inflammation as well as in current and emerging translational applications.