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Written by Dr. Ringpfeil

Nail Fungus (Onychomycosis)

nail fungus

Onychomycosis is a fungal infection of the nail. Either fingernails or toenails can be affected but the condition is more commonly seen in the toenails. People become aware of the condition because of the altered appearance of the nail or multiple nails. The nail can become yellowed, crumbly, thickened, lifted up from the nail bed or debris can be seen beneath the nail.

DIAGNOSIS

A definitive diagnosis is made by clipping a portion of the affected nail and sending it to the lab for analysis. Other clues to the diagnosis include rash on the feet or between the toes consistent with athlete's foot (tinea pedis). Longstanding athlete's foot infection can put individuals at risk for toenail fungus. Fungal infection of the skin of the hands (tinea manuum) can also be associated with onychomycosis of the fingernails.

TREATMENT

One of the most efficacious treatment options is treatment with an oral antifungal medication such as Lamisil. Fungal infection of the toenails requires treatment for a period of three months; fungal infection of the fingernails requires treatment for six weeks. Since the oral antifungals are metabolized through the liver, blood test monitoring of liver function is recommended when treatment for more than six weeks is required.

Another promising treatment alternative with a high percentage of effectiveness is treatment with the PinPointe laser. This laser can be found at some podiatrists' offices.

Topical treatment with antifungal solutions and creams is also available but treatment success is low and daily treatment for many months is required.

All treatments are hampered by the high recurrence rate for fungal nail infection. Even if treatment protocols are strictly followed and nail fungus is eradicated, there is a good chance that the problem will recur.

COPING

The dystrophic appearance of toenails infected with fungus can be improved through the use of topical keratolytics such as urea and by having the thickened nails filed down professionally by a podiatrist.

How can we help you?

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Last updated: 07/02/2020 7:44 PM

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What WE DID WELL

(Answers:674)

all people very nice.

#12019-12-12

The doctor and medical assistant took time to explain all of my treatment options and to answer all of my questions completely and honestly.

#22019-11-15

good service

#32011-04-19 10:17:20

Everyone was very nice!

#42020-03-13

The appearance and presentation of the office.

#52019-08-03

The doctor and assistant were wonderful!!! So friendly and warm. I am so used to doctors being rushed AND condescending. This was a great change!!

#62019-11-20

Your neatness. The orange uniforms give a cheery, clean appearance to the practice.

#72020-04-06

everyone was great

#82019-08-04

I have al;ways liked the Doctor and the satff

#92010-11-17 15:23:04

Everyone was friendly and helpful. We did not feel rushed at all and that is wonderful. Thanks!!

#102011-11-29 10:38:27

What can we do better?

(answers:373)

Everything was excellent.

#12019-08-21

Service was outstanding!

#22020-05-13

Magazines in the examining room to read while I waited for the doctor (I get bored easily).

#32020-01-17

I was dissapointed when my appointment was cancelled because of the snow. I had to wait 6 weeks to get another appointment. I wish that I could have been worked in sooner.

#42011-03-11 14:29:03

before prescribing a very expensive treatment, inform the patient you are doing so.

#52019-10-18

More appointment availability either early or later (before or after the normal 9-5 workday)

#62010-08-23 16:22:28

everything was great! as always nothing i can say to improve on! jill is always attentive and very thorough:)

#72010-10-27 12:20:56

tell the Dr. to stop snowboarding and come back to skiing..;-)

#82011-12-07 10:55:46

Everything was great!

#92020-01-01

The lock on the door of the unisex bathroom is a little challenging in that you don't know whether it is locked or not. This was a little unnerving.

#102010-10-28 10:21:25