What is ingrown nails, what causes it, what are the treatment processes?

We hear of people around us who have ingrown nails, whose life comfort is reduced, and who cannot even sleep comfortably due to ingrown nails, and we encounter such people. By consulting an expert on the subject, we wanted to find out what we were wondering and to raise awareness among our readers. The person to answer our questions is Dr. Feza Köylüoğlu, Orthopedic specialist at Antalya Med Star Yıldız Hospital. He is a physician who has successfully treated many ingrown toenails.

* Mr. Köylüoğlu. What is this ingrown toenail? We hear a lot. Is it really common in society and is it a very painful disorder?

Ingrown nail is an infection that manifests itself with swelling, redness and pain, especially on the inner or outer edge of the big toe nail. It starts mechanically with the nail edge sinking into the flesh. Complaints and findings are increasing. In the beginning, the pain only when touching a hard place becomes a serious infection that contaminates the socks with its discharge after a while. It is seen in almost every age group.

*What’s the reason? Why do our nails sink?

There are many reasons. However, according to my observation; The most common causes are wearing tight shoes, improper trimming of nails, and interestingly sweaty feet. Especially in young people, ingrown toenails develop on sweaty feet.

*Well, what can be done to prevent ingrown nails?

The reasons I just mentioned should be avoided. Such as not wearing tight shoes, cutting nails long, airing the feet at intervals. I have a website where I talk about these issues. Those who need it can get detailed information from there.

*How is an ingrown nail treated? You Dr. What do you do as Feza Köylüoğlu?

First of all, I have to say this. If there is an inflammatory nail ingrown, its treatment is definitely a surgical procedure. Applying ointment or using antibiotics will not solve the problem. Or getting a pedicure at the hairdressers is not the solution, it may even exacerbate the problem. Because the root of the problem lies in the fact that a part of the nail mechanically enters the meat and creates inflammation. If this mechanical obstacle is removed with a small surgical intervention, the problem is solved. There are many methods of treatment. The most common practice in hospitals is to remove the sunken part and suture it. This method has a high probability of recurrence. There is also the process of attaching a wire to the nail, which is becoming increasingly popular. This is based on the principle of widening the nail bed. It is tempting to wear a wire for patients who are afraid of the procedures to be done. However, it is a long and laborious process and a method with a high recurrence rate.

* Is it possible to repeat after the procedure? I guess I don’t get it wrong?

It is likely to recur if proper action is not taken. One of the most important success criteria of the procedure done for him is to have as little chance of recurrence as possible.

* What are you doing to prevent recurrence?

We apply a method called phenol matrixectomy. We take only the ingrown part on the edge of the nail up to the root, and we blind it with a chemical substance so that the nail does not come out and create an ingrown again. The results are very good.

* Is matrixectomy with phenol a new method?

No, it is not a new method. However, it is not widely used. The biggest reason is that these patients do not get the attention they need in public and university hospitals due to the density. It is either passed off with a simple ointment or patients are sent home with a very painful and inadequate procedure because sufficient experience has not been established. Because even making the finger feel no pain during an ingrown toenail intervention requires experience, and unfortunately, as we understand from the patients who come to us, most of the patients receive intervention before the anesthesia procedure is fully formed. Patients both suffer a lot and therefore incomplete procedures are performed.

*Mr. Dr. Koyluoglu. What do you recommend to patients with ingrown nails?

First of all, I suggest that they seek a doctor who has experience with many cases. It is very important that the procedure is painless and this is fully achieved in our patients. Post-intervention dressing and suture removal should be as few issues as possible. Cosmetically, there should be no trace of any operation. And when the benefit-cost comparison is made, it should be advantageous. The phenol-matrixectomy method is the only method that is close to perfection in all respects among all methods. Let them research and choose this method.

*We thank you.

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