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Fungal Toenails (Onychomycosis)

Overview

Onychomycosis, also known as Tinea Unguium, is a fungal infection of the nail. It is more common in toenails than fingernails.

Symptoms

The most common symptom of a fungal nail infection is the nail becoming thickened and discoloured: white, black, yellow or green. The nails can become brittle as the infection progresses, causing piece of the nails to flake off and fall away from the rest of the nail.

 

Causes

Onychomycosis is usually caused by a Dermatophyte Fungus. Certain environments allow these fungi to thrive. Moist environments caused by excessive sweating, non-breathable socks or shoes, or going barefoot in a wet place such as a swimming pool or shower all increase the risk of obtaining this infection. Poor blood circulation to feet, as experienced in peripheral vascular disease and patients with diabetes, also can put a patient at risk.

 

Treatment

(note: Complete cure rates much lower than a clinical or mycological cure rate)

It can take 1 year to see complete changes in a fungal toenail, due to the slower growth of toenails compared to fingernails.

 

The Podiatrists at Innovative Foot and Ankle are well versed in all current treatment options for fungal toenails. If you are concerned you may have this infection, visit one of our offices in the NJ areas of Kenilworth, Little Ferry, Bayonne, or Montclair.