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toenail fungus

Nail Fungus

Onychomycosis– a nail infection which is the root cause of all nail abnormalities is caused due to pathogens. These pathogens are varied, depending on the regions in which they are found. Before going to the causative agents of the disease, first it is imperative to know what is actually the disease called “nail fungal infection or Onychomycosis.”


In this disease, a pale yellow covering like substance is formed on the nail (usually on the toe nails) and the nail starts to break into pieces slowly form the outer edge. As the disease grows severe with time and if not checked and consulted by a doctor, then it swollen up the inside skin of the nail that may pain also.
Other symptoms of the disease may include

  • thickening and discoloration of the nails;
  • Yellow patches on the nails
  • Scales around the nail and pain in the skin underneath the nail
Nail fungus



Nail fungus is usually cause by fungi, molds and yeasts. These are bacteria that thrive without sunlight. Thus they need dark and moist atmosphere to survive. Shelter to them is provided by some of our body parts like nails especially “toenails“. Because there the fungi or any other causative agent of Onychomycosis can expand very easily as they don’t get sunlight, plus there is moisture in the toes which is well sufficient for the bacteria to grow, so much so to cover up the whole region surrounding the nail. That may cause inflammation in the skin under as well as around the nail.


This is the most important carrier of the disease “Onychomycosis” and it prevalent mostly in temperate Western countries. Dermatophytes are fungi. Some of the dermatophytes that cause nail fungus are

  • Trichophyton rubrum
  • Epidermophyton floccosum
  • T.violaceum
  • Microsporum Gypseum
  • T.tonsurans
  • T.soudanense
  • And the cattle worm fungus T.verrucosum

Non dermatophytes as the causal factors

Molds cause nail fungus in people who are older than 60 years of age because their bodies lose ability to defend themselves against the disease. Candida causes the disease to occur mainly in finger nails, it occurs in the nails of people who usually keep their hands submerged in water. The types of molds like Scytalidium (Neoscytalidium), Scopulariopsis and Aspergillus affect people of tropical and temperate regions.

Besides the causative pathogens, there can be other reasons for Onychomycosis. It can occur if one has a history of nail infection or any injury to the nails. Humid and moist environment attracts the fungal infection causing agents which can be provided by wearing shoes and socks for a longer time, it prevents air to reach the toes, which causes moistening conditions and preferable conditions for bacteria. Weak circulation problem may result is less effective immune system that may not detect the presence of fungus in the toes and it may result in worsening of this disease.


Diagnosis of Onychomycosis is done through laboratory testing with microscopic examination. The three approaches for the testing are- potassium hydroxide smear; culture and histology. In this, nail scrapings are taken and tested. There are recent advances in the research that suggest nail plate biopsy.

Nail Fungus Infection – Nail Fungus Treatment

And so is with the case of nail fungus infection. It is treated through different techniques. Medications can be given to cure it, but it will take a long time once medication is begun. Laser treatment is a better method, through which infection can be removed gently and within short time as compared to medication and further growth of fungus can be prevented. We recommend Zetaclear, please discover more here.

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