If you have problems with a toenail, you could consult a podiatrist to have it removed. This procedure isn't to be taken lightly as many nail problems have effective treatments. However, sometimes removing the toenail is the last resort when other treatments fail. Here are some reasons why a podiatrist may remove your toenail, how the procedure is done and its complications.
Why Remove a Toenail?
Most people agree to a toenail removal because they have a problem that is causing them discomfort and pain. For example, a problem with your large toe's nail could affect your ability to walk or even wear certain shoes. People may need a toenail removal for the following reasons.
Ingrown Toenail Infection
An ingrown toenail can dig into your skin and potentially cause an infection. Toenails on the big toe, especially, are prone to becoming ingrown. Most ingrown toenails are treatable up to a certain point, but a few cases require surgery.
Severe Fungal Infection
Fungal infections can distort and deform the nail. While medications exist that can treat them, they're not equally effective between people. If you have chronic infections, then surgery may help.
Thickened nails are not uncommon and usually don't cause severe problems. But, if they affect how you wear your shoes or even walk, then have them removed.
Deformed toenails that dig into the skin or are painful can cause problems, including infections.
What Happens During Toenail Removal?
The podiatrist can remove your toenail in their office under local anesthesia. Most of the surgeries involve only removing part or all of the nail. In rare cases, you may also need the entire nail and nail bed removed. Some people may benefit from reshaping the end of the toe. The goal is to eliminate your nail problems and reduce the chance of future problems.
What Complications Can Happen After Toenail Removal?
All surgeries have risks. You could experience an infection or allergic reaction from the surgery or anesthetic. Your toenail may grow back, though it will take time. There is a chance that the new nail may also have issues. However, it is less likely to be as severe as the previous problem. You can repeat the surgery if necessary.
If you have a toenail issue, your NDIS podiatrist can advise you on whether you need a toenail removed to solve your issues. Once you have a toenail removed, you must take extra care that the problem doesn't return. If you are having a problem with a toenail, or your feet in general, contact your NDIS podiatry provider for a consultation.