toenail fungus / fungal infections
Also known as: Onychomycosis or Tinea Unguium, toenail fungus is a fungal infection of toenails and is made up of tiny organisms (Tinea Unguium) that can infect toenails. These fungal infections usually cause discoloration, thickening and often softening of the nails. Nail fungus is a difficult condition to treat and may often cause permanent damage and possibly nail loss.
The nails of our toes are very effective barriers. This barrier makes it quite difficult for a superficial infection to invade the nail. Once an infection has set in however, the same barrier that was so effective in protecting us against infection now works against us, making it difficult to treat the infection. More than 30 million people in the United States get this fungus. Most often, nail fungus appears in the toenails because socks and shoes keep the toenails dark, warm, and moist, the perfect breeding ground for fungus.
At first, the edges or base of the nail is affected. As it spreads, the nail and nail bed show changes. There is often mild discomfort, itchiness, or even pain around the cuticles (flesh surrounding the nails). Bleeding or detachment of the cuticles may occur. The nail can become discolored-yellow-green, dark yellow-brown, and sometimes white spots are seen. The nails thicken and develop abnormal grooves, lines, and tiny punched out holes.
Current therapy for fungus nail treatment may include:
ORAL ANTIFUNGAL MEDICATION
- Side effects, must check blood for liver damage, which can be severe.
- Often do not penetrate the nail very well.
- Must be used for long periods of time while the nail grows entirely out.
SURGERY TO REMOVE THE NAIL
- Often leaves a distorted nail if the nail root (or matrix) is damaged during removal
LASER TREATMENT OF ONYCHOMYCOSIS
- The laser light works through the nail
- No side effects
- Does not harm the nail or skin
- No prep or anesthesia needed
- 3 sessions over 14 days
- Shoes and nail polish can be worn immediately after treatment
APPLICATION OF THE LASER BEAM
- Laser beam is applied by moving the beam in spiral pattern
- The treatment is accomplished by going over the nail for three complete passes
- No topical medicine was applied to the nail
- The patient may resume normal activities immediately after treatment
- The Treatment Result is apparent at 4-Months, Full growth of the new healthy nail can take 9-12 months to complete
The Fotana laser uses the 1063 nm wavelength which is FDA approved wavelength for the treatment of fungal nails.
RESULTS OF LASER TREATMENT