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Home :: Onychogryphosis

Onychogryphosis - Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

What is Onychogryphosis ?

Onychogryphosis is a thickening and distortion of the toenails usually due to tight or ill fitting shoes. These type of nails are caused by damage to the cells that grow the nail. This can be sudden acute damage such as dropping a heavy object onto the toe or can be due to a gradual damage over the years with the toes impacting into the toe box of the shoes or with various sporting activities.

Causes of Onychogryphosis

The thickening of a nail, which is common in older people, may be caused by several factors, including injury (such as that caused by ill-fitting shoes), infection, poor blood supply, diabetes, or inadequate intake of nutrients.

Symptoms of Onychogryphosis

Discomfort can result when footwear or even bed sheets press on thickened nails, because the surface beneath the nails (the nail plate) is also thickened and tender. Therefore, whatever presses on the nail indirectly presses on the nail plate. Nails can become so long and deformed that they impair walking. Long curved nails can also penetrate adjacent toes, resulting in pain and infection of the skin.

Treatment of Onychogryphosis

The Treatment for the thickened toenail depends on the severity and whether it causes you any pain or difficulty with wearing shoes. Common treatment for Onychogryphosis are :-

  • More commonly now the technique of using a saturated solution of Phenol after the nail is removed is used as it is a liquid the treatment reaches all parts of the germinal matrix and has a high success rate.
  • Apply a moisturizer on nails each time when you wash your hands or feet.
  • Soak the feet in warm salt water.

Prevention of Onychogryphosis

  • Footwear or stockings that gather at the toes should be avoided.
  • The nails should be kept trimmed.
  • Avoid tight fitting foot wear.
  • Avoid nail polish.

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