Fungus Toenails

Thick, ugly toenails.

Everyone has seen them, nobody wants them! People often associate these unhealthy nails with fungal infection.
In truth, about 40-50% of thick, discolored toenails are due to fungal infection. The other 50-60% aredue to a variety of other conditions, including psoriasis, lichen planus, injury, and , most commonly, degenerative changes of the nail.

T is important to determine the exact cause of diseased toenails, as the treatment varies based on the cause. Your podiatrist can determine the diagnosis by taking a small clipping of the nail and sending it to a laboratory for analysis. When the results are available, treatment options can be discussed.

As mentioned, about half of cases are due to fungus infection. This is called onychomycosis or tineaunguim. The incidence of this condition increases with age, affecting 60% of people in their 60s, 70% of people in their 70s, 80% of people in their 80s, and so forth. The most common fungal organisms causing nail infections are called dermatophytes. These are fungi that can only infect skin and nail, and cannot get into your body or bloodstream. They are not highly contagious from person to person. It is known that fungal nail infections often follow nail injury, and can be aggravated by the moist, hot environment of the shoe.

You do not have to live with thick, ugly toenails. Make an appointment with one of our doctors and let us help you!

Posted in Melbourne Podiatry Blog.