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Toe Nail Removal

Unless you had your finger accidentally slammed in a door, you probably haven’t even had to think about a nail coming off one of your digits. However, it may be surprising to know that nail removal—specifically, removal of a toenail—is a fairly common procedure.

Sometimes removing the nail is the only way to fix, or attempt to fix, a recurring problem. But why would someone need a toenail removed? How is it done, how do you recover, and what are the most important things to know before having it done? Here are some of the most vital things to keep in mind before you go under the knife.


Know What It Is

  • Toenail removal means the surgical excision of all or part of a toenail when it is diseased, painful, or infected. It is an extremely minor surgical procedure and can be completed very efficiently in a normal doctor’s office or a clinic.

Know What It Treats

  • Most frequently, toenail removal is a treatment for advanced cases of toenail fungus. (Fungus is a surprisingly common problem; over half of the nail infections treated by doctors are caused by fungi!) is also very commonly used to treat ingrown toenails (this way, the nail has a chance to regrow in the proper way and other less radical treatments can work more effectively on the nail bed) or “ram’s horn” nails.

  • Many times, a doctor may choose to excise a portion of the toenail to examine the nail bed, nail folds, or matrix more minutely, apply other treatments, or determine whether a biopsy is necessary in cases of potential cancers or fungal infections.

Surgery of any kind tends to not be enjoyable, and it isn’t hard to see why. Besides the general inconvenience of recuperation, the fear of having sharp implements cutting into and removing any part of one’s body is rather disturbing, even if the removing is done by a trained, sane medical professional.

Doubtless if your doctor is recommending, or even insisting upon, toenail removal, you are at the end of a long road of pain, embarrassment, discomfort, frustration, and any number of other emotions that come with recurrent, recalcitrant medical issues.