Fungal nail infections are very common and can affect the fingernails and the toenails. A fungal nail infection causes visual changes to the nail. Nails change in colour, get much thicker and can become brittle. As the infection progresses the nails will start to produce a distinct odour.
The Fungi that causes these infections is called Dermatophytes. It live harmlessly on the skin but can often multiply and lead to infection in dark, warm and moist environments such as the feet. Certain shoes can make the feet hot and sweaty which can lead to the fungi multiplying quickly. If fungal infections are left untreated the infection will progress.the nail will become discoloured with the nail turning white, yellow, green or even black. The nail cam become thickened and the texture can change making it difficult to trim. The shape of the nail can also change which can cause discomfort when placing pressure on the toes that are affected.
The first thing to do is make sure what you have is definitely a fungal nail infection. This is easily done in clinic with the ‘5 minuet fungal test’. We can test the nails in front of you and get the result within 5 minuets.
Oral anti-fungal treatments can be prescribed by your GP if you are suitable. With consent, we would contact your GP and arrange for this to be prescribed.
At LR podiatry we offer Lacuna Method treatment for fungal nails. The nail is fenestrated, this is when a series of small holes are drilled into the infected nail and a treatment is sprayed onto it. This helps to penetrate the nail bed where the active portions of the infection lies.
Read more about the Lacuna Method here
Topical treatments are available over the counter or from your podiatrist. Fungal nails infection can take a long time to resolve (Twelve months+), but the proper preparation of the nail surface by a podiatrist prior to applying the topical agent can increase the success.