infection caused by a fungus. Predominant fungus is called a dermatophyte, but
also can be caused by molds or yeast. Most commonly affects the toe nails (big
toe) first, then slowly spreads to remaining toe nails. Left untreated, many
times will spread to the finger nails. This is not a cosmetic condition or problem.
It is an infectious disease process and should be treated and eliminated. There
are many effective treatment options available today.
My preferred method of treatment for relatively mild cases involves
the application of a topical anti-fungal nail lacquer called Penlac© (please
click on Penlac© for more information on this product) nightly for approximately
three to five months depending on number of nails involved and severity of the
disease. In moderate to severe cases of onychomycosis, I
recommend the addition of an oral antifungal medication called Lamisil© (click
on Lamisil© for more information regarding this medication). This medication
is taken once daily for ninety days. The combination of Lamisil© orally
and Penlac© topically is rendering success rates of up to 80 to 90% for
me clinically. For resistant or multiply recurrent conditions options range from
continued topical/oral therapy, to removal of the nails permanently.
If you think you may have onychomycosis, you should see a podiatrist soon.
This condition can spread to other family members, and as stated earlier, usually
spreads to contiguous toe nails and many times to the finger nails.