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  • Leukonychia


    Leukonychia (or leuconychia), also known as white nails or milk spots, is a medical term for white discolouration appearing on nails. It is derived from the Greek words leuko ("white") and onyx ("nail"). The most common cause is injury to the base of the nail (the matrix) where the nail is formed. It is harmless and most commonly caused by minor injuries, such as nail biting, which occur while the nail is growing. Leukonychia occurs most commonly in healthy individuals, and is unrelated to any known nutritional or physiological deficiency. When caused by injury the marks will disappear as the nail grows outwards. While there are various sources that link dietary needs or vitamin deficiency with recurrent leukonychia, this notion has been challenged by some medical researchers. Other possible reasons for this problem with nail colour can be linked to: Arsenic poisoning Lead poisoning Pneumonia Heart disease Renal failure Ill health Hypoalbuminemia Vitamin deficiency Ulcerative colitis Hepatic cirrhosis Psychogenic stresses Onychophagia Occupational trauma Zinc deficiency Protein deficiency Psoriasis as well as eczema Iron deficiency

  • Onychomycosis


    Onychomycosis, also known as tinea unguium, is a fungal infection of the nail. Symptoms may include white or yellow nail discoloration, thickening of the nail, and separation of the nail from the nail bed. Toenails or fingernails may be affected, but it is more common for toenails to be affected. Complications may include cellulitis of the lower leg. A number of different types of fungus can cause onychomycosis including dermatophytes and Fusarium. Risk factors include athlete's foot, other nail diseases, exposure to someone with the condition, peripheral vascular disease, and poor immune function. The diagnosis is generally suspected based on the appearance and confirmed by laboratory testing. Onychomycosis does not necessarily require treatment. The antifungal medication, terbinafine, taken by mouth appears to be the most effective but is associated with liver problems. Trimming the affected nails when on treatment also appears useful. There is a ciclopirox-containing nail polish, but it does not work as well. The condition returns in up to half of cases following treatment. Not using old shoes after treatment may decrease the risk of recurrence. It occurs in about 10 percent of the adult population. Older people are more frequently affected. Males are affected more often than females. Onychomycosis represents about half of nail disease. It was first determined to be the result of a fungal infection in 1853 by Georg Meissner.

  • Nail disease


    A nail disease or onychosis is a disease or deformity of the nail. Although the nail is a structure produced by the skin and is a skin appendage, nail diseases have a distinct classification as they have their own signs and symptoms which may relate to other medical conditions. Some nail conditions that show signs of infection or inflammation may require medical assistance.

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