What is Toenail Fungus?
Onychomycosis (toenail fungus) is an infection of the nail and sometimes surrounding tissue. It is extremely common with 20% of the general population and 75% of individuals over 60 years old affected. Frequently the problem causes cosmetic concerns, but many patients also experience pain, and infrequently toenail fungus can allow more serious infections to occur.
Symptoms and Clinical Presentation
Most patients note yellowing and thickening of the nail. With time the nail may become brittle with jagged edges, deformed, or detach from the nail bed.
Cause (including risk factors)
Multiple fungi species can infect the nail. Fungus grows well in warm, moist environments such as showers. Prevalence among the general population is high, but risk factors for developing toenail fungus include increasing age, being male, or having certain medical conditions such as diabetes or vascular insufficiency and malnutrition.
Local and systemic treatment options are available, and should be sought from your healthcare provider. Individuals should recognize that continued exposure to an environment conducive to growth of fungus (a warm, moist environment such as in a shoe) is likely to lead to recurrence of the infection. • Toenail fungus natural cure: Debridement of the nail can be performed to relieve pain without directly treating the fungus.