Nail Disease

Nail diseases may comprise a host of disorders and may provide the dermatologist with clues regarding underlying disorders and stress.

Typically the common conditions associated with visits to a dermatologist include:

  1. Nail fungal infections – discolored, crumbly nails with heaped up material beneath a nail, particularly if only one or two nails are affected are signs you may be suffering from an underlying nail infection and it may be a good idea to visit your dermatologist.
  2. Bacterial Nail infection – This typically occurs in the nail folds and is also known as Paronychia – typically caused by a bacteria called staphylococci aureus, but may rarely occur due to other bacteria / fungi as well. This is manifested by a swelling around the nail, which maybe reddish in color and painful.
  3. Subungual or periungual warts – Rough growths, around or under the nail are suggestive of warts, which can be a nuisance especially if they are encroaching on the nail bed. Urgent attention is warranted for these.
  4. Ingrown toenails are a common cause of visits to a dermatologist and are typically manifested by a nail piercing your nail folds and eventually resulting in infection around the area.
  5. Age related changes of the nail
  6. Other rare conditions include tumors and growth associated with the nail apparatus

Causes

There can be several causes of occurrence of nail infection. Below mentioned pointers throw light on the same:

  1. Diabetic patients are more likely to get nail infections.
  2. Those who wear artificial nails are susceptible to nail infections.
  3. Chances of getting nail infections are more in people who go for frequent swimming in public swimming pools.
  4. If you get a nail injury or get your skin injured near the nails, chances of getting an infection exist.
  5. Frequent manicures and pedicures are common causes of nail infections as the cuticle is disrupted providing infection a route of entry into the nail apparatus.
  6.  Weak immune systems can make you an easy prey to nail infections.
  7. Frequent work which involves wet hands (kitchen work/ household work etc.) can lead to occurrence of nail fold and nail infections.

Treatment Options

We suggest tailored treatments once the doctor diagnoses the condition after individual tests of the infection area. As per the case, typically the root cause is treated which involves treatment of infections with antibiotics and antifungals, rarely requiring procedural intervention. Further treatment of ingrown nails require surgical intervention.