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Serving Hagerstown and Frederick, MD
The most common nail disorder is a fungal infection of the nail called Onychomycosis. Fungus is everywhere including your shoes and socks. Some people get fungal infections and others don’t. This is predetermined by genetics as some people can walk through a puddle of fungus and not get the infection and others can walk around the puddle and become infected.
A fungus is a common mold that thrives in dark, warm, moist areas so inside shoes one would expect to find fungus. On the feet, it can grow on the toenails. Fungal problems can be a result of environment (socks, shoes, heat, and humidity) or weakened immunity (diseases such as diabetes). Chronic fungal infections are most common in adults, while acute fungal infections are seen more often in children.
When a fungal infection progresses, it may infect one or more nails turning them yellow, green, black or other colors. Fungal nail infections can cause nail thickening, inflammation, or sensitivity. The fungus lives under the nail at the root and on the surface in some instances. The diagnosis of Onychomycosis can be made clinically.
Treatment consists of doing nothing which will allow the fungus to spread and the nails to thicken and spread to all toenails possibly. Allowing the fungus to persist can cause spreading which can cause complications like ulceration (if the nail gets very thick) and athlete’s foot.
The toenail can be removed permanently with a small, short in office procedure. The nail will never come back after this and people do well without the toenail.
There is a pill that you can take but it could destroy your liver and people have died from taking the medication. The medication is a safe medication for the most part and monitoring your liver function while taking the pill is mandatory. Blood tests will be done 2 times, at the beginning and in the middle of oral therapy. The therapy requires a pill a day for 3 months costs about $1000.00 dollars and takes a year to work.
Finally, the most beneficial method we have found is using the Q-Clear laser on the infected toenails which is FDA cleared for nail fungus. It works better than any other treatment modality and is pain free and takes 5-10 minutes. To ensure your nails stay clear we recommend 2 doctor strength solutions: Formula 3 applied in the morning and Gordochrom applied in the evening. Each one has an FDA approved antifungal that kills fungus in a different way so you give the infection a double hit. Most people start off using these medications and they usually take 2-4 months to work. In, addition to the Q-clear laser and antifungal solutions we use the Steri-Shoe shoe sanitizer which kills the fungus, bacteria and viruses in your shoes so you don’t re-infect your toenails when you wear your shoes. This device has UV lamps incorporated into 2 shoe horns that fit in your shoe and sterilize it in 45 minutes. After the Q-clear laser treatment you can use daniPro nail polish if desired on your nails which has an FDA approved antifungal medication infused into the nail polish. daniPro nail polish is the best nail polish on the market without any bad chemicals that traditional nail polish contains. With the Q-Clear laser, Forumula-3, Gordochrom, Steri-Shoe and daniPro nail polish, your toenails will look better than ever in the fastest time available in the world today.