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Surgery For Ingrown Toenails | Procedure Recovery & Risks

At Callen Olive, we understand the paramount importance of healthy toenails for your overall well-being. Our team of podiatrists are dedicated to delivering unparalleled nail surgery services, setting the benchmark for excellence in foot care.

Ingrown Toenail

Ingrown toenails are a common and painful condition where the edge of the toenail grows into the surrounding skin. They usually occur on the big toe but can affect any toe. Ingrown toenails can cause redness, swelling, tenderness, and pain, and can also become very painful and infected if left untreated.

Medically referred to as Onychocryptosis, ingrown toenails happen when the nail grows into the skin, usually due to improper toenail cutting or tight-fitting shoes. Other factors that can contribute to ingrown toenails include genetics, trauma to the toe, and fungal infections. People who have curved or thick nails, diabetes, or poor circulation are also more prone to ingrown toenails.

While ingrown toenails are not typically bad or dangerous, they can become infected if left untreated. An infection can cause redness, swelling, and pain in the affected area, and in severe cases, the infection can spread to other parts of the foot and even the body, so it is important to seek a podiatry appointment if you suspect an infection. An ingrown toenail can infect the underlying bone and lead to a severe bone infection. If you have an ingrown toenail, it's important to seek treatment from your podiatrist to prevent complications.

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Where do ingrown toenails come from?

There are many possible causes for ingrown toenails. The most common one is tight shoe wear or improper grooming and trimming of the nail, for example, leaving nail spikes at the corners. Another relatively usual cause is trauma as a result of stubbing the toe or having it stepped on. Losing the toenail because of the repetitive pressure from certain sports, such as running, after a fungal infection, or other conditions like psoriasis may also promote an ingrown toenail.

Some people have an inherited tendency to develop nail problems, which can worsen as they grow older. With age, toenails become thicker, harder to trim and more susceptible to curve at the edges.

What are the symptoms of ingrown toenails?

Although any of your toenails can become ingrown, the problem more frequently affects the big toe. During the early stages of developing an ingrown toenail, your toe may feel swollen and tender, and your nail may be harder than usual. As the problem evolves, you're likely to develop an infection, causing your toe to turn red and feel very sore. In more severe cases, you may even see a little bit of pus leaking from the wound.

As soon as you start experiencing changes in your nail or discomfort in your foot, you should consult your podiatrist. If you have diabetes or another condition that causes poor blood flow to your feet, you're at greater risk of complications from ingrown toenails.

Can an ingrown toenail infection spread?

An ingrown toenail infection can spread if the infection is not treated properly. The infection can spread to other parts of the foot or even the bloodstream, which can lead to sepsis. People who have diabetes or a weakened immune system are more susceptible to infections and may be at a higher risk for developing sepsis from an ingrown toenail infection.

To prevent an ingrown toenail infection from spreading, it's important to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Treatment options may include antibiotics to clear the infection, removing the ingrown toenail, and keeping the affected area clean and dry.

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What are the treatments for an ingrown toenail?

There are several ways to treat an ingrown toenail, depending on the severity of the condition.

In some cases, an ingrown toenail may heal on its own with proper at-home care, such as soaking the foot in warm water and wearing comfortable shoes that don't put pressure on the affected toe. However, if the ingrown toenail is causing significant pain, swelling, or infection, medical treatment may be necessary. If an ingrown toenail becomes infected, it may require antibiotics to clear the infection.

In cases where the nail has repeatedly penetrated the skin, we advise going under nail surgery — a simple and safe procedure performed under local anesthesia, which permanently removes the side of the ingrown nail.

Nail surgery is the most effective method to eliminate the nail edge from growing inward and cutting into the fleshy folds of the skin.

For most cases of ingrown toenails, we perform a type of surgery called a partial nail avulsion. This surgical technique involves removing a portion of the toenail to prevent it from digging into the skin and causing infection.

A partial nail avulsion takes around 45 minutes and offers a quick recovery time, with a 95% success rate.

Most people report little to no discomfort after surgery, returning to their normal activities as quickly as the following day. The recovery time frame from ingrown toenail surgery can range from four to six weeks, depending on the severity of the condition and if infection occurs. Cosmetically, the nail plate will look slightly narrower once fully healed, but this change is usually barely noticeable.

On fewer occasions, we may advise removing the entire nail. This procedure is called complete nail plate avulsion, and it is only carried out when a severely damaged or thickened toenail causes recurring problems that the partial removal of the nail cannot solve. The complete removal of the nail is not always the preferred method because it increases the likelihood of your toenail growing back deformed. However, in rare cases, it is a better option to avoid future complications.

There are many advantages to ingrown toenail surgery, from experiencing hardly any discomfort and no infection to a permanent cure of an in-growing toenail, with fewer restrictions for shoe choice and easier walking.

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Why Entrust Your Nail Health to Callen Olive Podiatry Clinic?

Expert Podiatrists:
Experience the expertise of our podiatrists who prioritise precision and optimal results in every nail surgery procedure.

Cutting-edge Facilities:
Immerse yourself in the latest advancements in nail surgery at Callen Olive. Our state-of-the-art facilities ensure that you receive cutting-edge treatments for your nail concerns.

Tailored Solutions:
Acknowledging the uniqueness of each client, our approach is personalised to address individual needs. Whether dealing with ingrown toenails, fungal infections, or nail deformities, our tailored solutions guarantee effective and lasting results.

Explore Our Comprehensive Nail Surgery Services:

Ingrown Toenail Removal:
Bid farewell to the discomfort of ingrown toenails with our gentle and effective removal procedures, providing relief and preventing recurrent issues.

Nail Surgery for Fungal Infections:
Combat fungal nail infections with advanced techniques that target the root cause, ensuring a comprehensive and lasting solution to restore the health of your nails.

Correction of Nail Deformities:
Trust our experts to correct nail deformities, enhancing the aesthetic appeal of your nails and improving overall foot health.

Why Opt for Nail Surgery at Callen Olive?

Comprehensive Consultations:
Embark on your journey to healthier nails with a detailed consultation. Our podiatrists conduct thorough assessments, understanding your concerns and crafting personalised solutions.

Innovative Treatments:
Benefit from the latest advancements in nail surgery. Our commitment to innovation ensures that you receive cutting-edge treatments for optimal results.

Compassionate Care:
At Callen Olive, your comfort and well-being are our top priorities. Our compassionate approach, coupled with skilled hands, guarantees a positive experience throughout your treatment journey.