What can I do about redness and swelling around my fingernails and toenails after having a manicure and pedicure?

This is a frequent complication of having your nails done. It can also happen if you cut your nails yourself. This is medically known as paronychia. It is an infection of the skin adjacent to the nail, usually caused by a small cut in this adjacent skin. This results in bacteria, fungus and/or yeast entering the skin, causing an infection, resulting in pain, tenderness, redness and swelling. It is important to see a dermatologist for this condition, as it is difficult to treat at home.

If not properly treated, this condition can result in serious permanent damage to the skin of tip of the finger.

It is treated with either oral antibiotics or oral anti-fungal/anti-yeast medication. It is important, if possible, to attain a culture and sensitivity from the infected tissue in order to determine which germ is growing and the appropriate antimicrobial medication to treat it.

In addition, meticulous topical care with appropriate medications is essential. This condition can be extremely painful and, if not appropriate treated, can even severely damage the adjacent skin on the finger or toe.

Once treated appropriately, the condition can be completely cured.

– Dr. Bussell

Beverly Hills Dermatology Consultants

433 N. Camden Drive, Suite 805   Beverly Hills, CA 90210 | 310-550-7661

What can be done about redness, swelling and tenderness around the big toe?

Ingrown Toenail
Ingrown Toenail

What you are describing can be caused by an ingrown toenail or an infection around the toe caused by cutting the skin during a pedicure. The infection resulting from an ingrown toenail should be treated not only with oral antibiotics but also meticulous removal of the portion of the nail that is cutting into the adjacent skin.

I do not recommend partial permanent removal of the toenail, which is frequently done by foot doctors. I recommend removing only the portion of the nail that is causing the problem on the side of the nail. I try to keep the growing portion of the nail intact. This requires careful microsurgery for the involved area and vigorous topical treatments to heal the damaged skin. The longer the condition has lasted, the longer it may take to completely resolve. Usually healing from this method results in a totally normal nail.

– Dr. Bussell

Beverly Hills Dermatology Consultants

433 N. Camden Drive, Suite 805   Beverly Hills, CA 90210 | 310-550-7661

Do you get fungus infections in your nails after manicures and pedicures?

We see this often in our practice.  Next time you have your nails done, ask your manicurist to completely dry the nails with a hair dryer before applying the base coat and polish.

Fungus likes moisture and will thrive between the nail and the polish if moisture is present.

Also, try to avoid cleaning under the nails with any type of instrument or brush.  This creates pockets under the nail that retain moisture and, coupled with body heat, allow fungus to grow.  Remove dirt and debris under the nails simply by soaking in soapy water.

Fungus infections produce a white or yellow discoloration and sometimes also thickening and splitting of the nail.

– Dr. Bussell

Beverly Hills Dermatology Consultants

433 N. Camden Drive, Suite 805   Beverly Hills, CA 90210 | 310-550-7661