Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Fungal Infection in the NAILS

According to experts there are two most common causes of fungal infection in the nails from candida and from Tinea fungus. Candida is a yeast like fungus. Candida Infection of the nails is called paranychia, making the nails greenish or brownish. this infection invades the under portion of the nails, causing the underlying and surrounding skin to thicken and redden.
Tinea infection of the nails on the other hand, is called onychomycosis. The infection starts at the free end of the nails, making them thick, irregular, and whitish to yellowish. The infected nails are not only unpleasant to look, they usually snag on clothing because of the ragged edge they form. Forty percent of the time there is also a concomitant fungal infection on the other parts of the body. The toenails are more frequently affected than the fingernails.
In most cases fungal infection occurs because of moist or wet surrounding. a person who work in wet places are the most commonly affected by paranychia, while those also perspire a lot and wear enclosed and tight shoes or have diabetes mellitus, cancer or malnourished are also predisposed. A crack on the skin can start the infection.
Diagnosis can be made by examination under the microscope or fungal culture. Most of the time, the characteristic lesion will already help in the diagnosis.
And the good suggestion is consult a dermatologist since treatment is quite tedious and frustrating. Treatment for chronic cases may last up to six months or more, but the success rate may be up to 70 percent only.
There are also nail lacquers available in the pharmacy, which need to be applied once a week for several months. Oral anti-fungal agents are also available and can be taken especially if there is an infection on the other parts of the body.

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