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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 78  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 279--289

Ingrown toenails

Department of Dermatology and STD, VM Medical College and Safdarjang Hospital, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Niti Khunger
Department of Dermatology and STD, VM Medical College and Safdarjang Hospital, Ring Road, New Delhi - 110 029
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0378-6323.95442

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Onychocryptosis or ingrown toenail is a very common pathology of the toenail unit, chiefly affecting adolescents and young adults. The ingrown toenail is responsible for disabling complaints like pain and difficulty in walking. It is associated with significant morbidity, hampering the quality of life as it interferes with sporting activities, school, or work. It principally occurs in the hallux. It is ascribed to poor trimming of the nails in combination with local pressure due to ill-fitting footwear, hyperhidrosis, poor foot hygiene and nail abnormalities. Pain, swelling and discharge are the main clinical features. Four stages of the condition have been described. Diagnosis is usually evident, but it should be differentiated from subungual exostosis and tumors of the nail bed. The current standard of care focuses on conservative treatment like the gutter splint technique in the initial stages, and in cases that are resistant to medical management or recurrent, surgical correction is the treatment of choice. There are various surgical techniques that are described in literature. Although there is no ideal technique, lateral nail plate avulsion with lateral matricectomy by phenol is commonly used and reported to be more effective in reducing recurrences. The aim of this review article is to focus on this common pathology of the nail, the various techniques employed in management and aid in the selection of treatment according to the stage and severity of the disease.


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Online since 15th March '04
Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow