Nail fungus, also known as onychomycosis, is a condition in which one or more of the nails of the fingers or toes become infected with fungal organisms. This causes a yellowing or other discolouration of the nail as the fungus moves deeper into the tissue. Nail fungus can be painful and may eventually lead to the separating of the nail and nail bed, a condition known as onycholysis.

Cause

Fungal infections are fairly common because microscopic fungal, yeast and mold organisms are present everywhere in the environment. Toenails are particularly susceptible to infection because they are often kept in warm, moist environments in which these microscopic organisms thrive.

Symptoms

If you have any of these symptoms, give us a call to schedule a consultation. While toenail fungus infections can be stubborn, they are treatable. Left untreated, however, the infection will only get worse over time.

Common symptoms of a nail fungal infection include:

  • Discolored nails
  • Thickened, dull (shine-free) or distorted nails
  • Yellow-streaked nails
  • Buildup of debris under the nail
  • Separation between the nail and skin
  • Brittle, ragged nails
  • White spots on the surface of the nail

Diagnosis

Your Podiatrist may look for the symptoms listed below to diagnose or rule out the condition, or a sample may be obtained from the nail in question for further investigation under a microscope.