This occurs when fungi infects one or more of the nails. It usually begins as a white or yellow spot under the tip of your fingernail or toenail. As the infection spreads deeper into the nail, it may cause the nail to discolour, thicken and develop crumbling edges.
Common fungal nail infection is treatable by taking oral anti-fungal antibiotics. For finger nails, it is usually 3 months’ long of treatment and it may take 6-10 months for toe nails. Alternatively, an anti-fungal nail varnish can be used for milder and more superficial fungal nail infection. Nail surgery is sometimes performed when oral medication is inappropriate or fails.
Ingrown toenail is a common disorder that most often affects the big toe. Initially the side of the big toe becomes red and slightly painful with mild swelling. When infection develops, the area can be swollen with pus formation and patient may have difficulty in walking because of pain.
Treatment usually involves the use of topical and oral antibiotic and pain relief medications. Very often, Dr Wong needs to surgically remove part of the ingrown nail so that the skin or infection can heal. Performing matricectomy to cause destruction of the location where nail is produced will also decrease the recurrence rate of ingrown toenail.
Warts located just next to the nail plates respond less well to treatment and has a higher tendency to recur. This is because part of the wart may be hidden underneath the nail plate and the wart is partially protected. Treatment approach is similar to the common warts but it generally requires more treatment sessions than usual.
This is an infection of the nail fold leading to pus formation, redness and swelling around the nails. There are 2 types: acute and chronic paronychia.
Acute and Chronic Paronychia
Acute Paronychia is usually caused by bacteria. Injury to the nail folds leads to bacteria infection, resulting in a painful small abscess around the nail. In Chronic Paronychia, on top of the redness and swelling, there is also retraction of the nail fold. Retraction of the nail fold increases the inflammation because food, chemicals and germs continue to enter the space between the nail and nail fold leading to further irritation.
Dr Wong will recommend appropriate treatment to the patient depending on the severity and type of paronychia that they present with.