Nail Surgery

Sole-lution podiatry specialise in nail surgery practices

Ingrown toenails

An ingrown toenail is when the nail grows into the skin, usually at the sides of the nail. This irritates the skin, often creating pain, redness, swelling, and warmth in the toe. If an ingrown nail causes a break in the skin, bacteria may enter and cause an infection, which can lead to pus draining from the area.

How does a podiatrist treat ingrown toenails?

  • Painless removal of the nail spike may be possible in early cases.
  • Surgery – part of the nail. Surgery may involve numbing the toe and removing a corner of the nail or a larger portion of the nail. A simple procedure performed in the office, is commonly needed to ease the pain and remove the offending nail.
  • Oral antibiotics. If an infection is present, an oral antibiotic may be prescribed on referral to your doctor.
  • Surgery – the whole nail. This involves numbing the toe and removing the entire nail. Permanent removal prevents the recurrence of an ingrown toenail.

What contributes to an ingrown toenail?

  • Cutting your toenails too short encourages the skin next to the nail to fold over the nail.
  • Incorrectly fitted shoes that are tight or short.
  • Trauma, such as stubbing your toe or having an object fall on your toe.
  • Repeated pressure on the toes during activities such as kicking or running.
  • Certain other conditions may create greater risk, e.g. a toenail fungal infection or loss of a nail through trauma.

Following nail surgery, a light bandage will be applied. Most people experience very little pain and may resume normal activity the next day.