Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Ingrown Toenail Overview

What is an ingrown toenail?
A person with an ingrown toenail has a nail that is growing into the skin of the toe. The edge of the nail grows into the skin, resulting in pain, redness and swelling of the skin around the nail. In many cases, the skin becomes infected. Ingrown toenails completely resolve with treatment and appropriate nail care.

What are the symptoms of an ingrown toenail?
Symptoms of an ingrown toenail include toe pain that is located next to the nail. Additional symptoms include red, swollen skin and tenderness next to the nail.

How does the doctor treat an ingrown toenail?
Treatment for an ingrown fingernail includes warm soaks, proper nail trimming, and antibiotics. Partial nail removal may be required in some cases, in order to promote healing. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications may help relieve pain. Skin infections may require treatment with antibiotics.

Continue to Ingrown Toenail Risk Factors

Last Updated: Aug 2, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Ingrown Toenail References
  1. Gupta S, Sahoo B, Kumar B. Treating ingrown toenails by nail splinting with a flexible tube: an Indian experience. J Dermatol. 2001 Sep;28(9):485-9. [11603389]
  2. Persichetti P, Simone P, Li Vecchi G, Di Lella F, Cagli B, Marangi GF. Wedge excision of the nail fold in the treatment of ingrown toenail. Ann Plast Surg. 2004 Jun;52(6):617-20. [15167000]
  3. Takahashi M, Narisawa Y. Radical surgery for ingrown nails by partial resection of the nail plate and matrix using a carbon dioxide laser. J Cutan Laser Ther. 2000 Mar;2(1):21-5. [11446087]
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