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Old 03-17-2005, 01:46 PM   #1
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LoreleiG HB User
Line on nail

I've been reading like crazy, and driving myself nuts.

I have a line going through the center of my left thumbnail, longitudinally. It's purplish, and not very dark at all, but it goes from the base of my nail to the tip, and it's less than a 1 mm wide. Colorwise, it's not the brown or black that I would expect with a melanonychia, and when I showed my derm, he said it was probably a bruise of some sort, that had occurred at the base of my nail, and that the purplish streak would probably continue to be visible until the original wound was healed. It's been noticeable for about a month.

Does this sound remotely possible? I do not remember hurting myself, but I also don't want to appear as a hypochondriac to my dermatologist, but I also don't want him to ignore something serious.

I'm Caucasian, and it's only on one finger, so in reading, now I'm really, really worried.

Any advice?

 
Old 03-18-2005, 04:52 AM   #2
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Marti HB UserMarti HB UserMarti HB UserMarti HB UserMarti HB UserMarti HB UserMarti HB User
Re: Line on nail

Quote:
Originally Posted by LoreleiG
I've been reading like crazy, and driving myself nuts.

I have a line going through the center of my left thumbnail, longitudinally. It's purplish, and not very dark at all, but it goes from the base of my nail to the tip, and it's less than a 1 mm wide. Colorwise, it's not the brown or black that I would expect with a melanonychia, and when I showed my derm, he said it was probably a bruise of some sort, that had occurred at the base of my nail, and that the purplish streak would probably continue to be visible until the original wound was healed. It's been noticeable for about a month.

Does this sound remotely possible? I do not remember hurting myself, but I also don't want to appear as a hypochondriac to my dermatologist, but I also don't want him to ignore something serious.

I'm Caucasian, and it's only on one finger, so in reading, now I'm really, really worried.

Any advice?
I have to agree with your Doctor - it doesn't sound like melanonychia because it usually is very dark brown. Purple is more classic for hematoma. Yes, it is possible to damage the matrix and not remember. The leading edge of the matrix is the portion of nail that can be seen as the white half-moon at the base of the nail. It will grow out with the nail plate, but remember, it can take up to 6 months for the nail plate to completely replace itself from the matrix.

 
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Old 03-18-2005, 05:10 AM   #3
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LoreleiG HB User
Re: Line on nail

Thank you so much!

 
Old 07-30-2005, 12:41 PM   #4
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LoreleiG HB User
Re: Line on nail

Hello....

I'm still a bit worried, and I wanted to ask a question before I go back in to see my doctor on Tuesday about this. I got such good advice before.

It's been almost 6 months since the line appeared, and although my nails have grown, I still have the line on my nail. It hasn't gotten any darker (it actually looks a little lighter), and it now appears to begin near the top of the white, half moon part of my nail. I've looked at it in all lights, and sometimes it looks like it might extend downward, but at this point, I'm pretty sure it's an optical illusion from the ridge of my nail. Or I have lost my mind. If I use a penlight from behind my thumb, I can see where it stops, and it stops several millimeters before it reaches the cuticle, though it looks a little lower (the line) than it does on just visual inspection without the light (probably a 1.5 mm difference when using the light).

I guess I just thought it would have grown out faster, and since I tend to worry, I'm making my doctor take a look at it again.

Is it possible for a nail plate to take longer than 6 months to grow out? Is the fact that it is purplish, even though it is still there, a good sign?

Does melanonychia only get darker as it clears the half moon? If I've read right, it should be a steady color from under the cuticle all the way up if it were a melanonychia, correct? And it would be more likely to be a dark brown or black, not purple?

Thanks for any help you can offer the hypochondriac in me.

Last edited by LoreleiG; 07-31-2005 at 11:37 AM. Reason: clarity

 
Old 07-31-2005, 06:11 AM   #5
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Re: Line on nail

If you get an answer report back.

I have a line down the middle of both thumbnails. The nails spit at the outer end of the line. I have had them for a couple of years. I have to keep the nails short as possible to prevent tears.

 
Old 08-04-2005, 09:28 AM   #6
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LoreleiG HB User
Re: Line on nail

Well, I went and saw the derm this morning.

He measured it, and looked at it under a number of lights, and decided that it was an injury induced melanonychia (which explains why it's not dark brown or black, but rather a faded purplish color). He says it's the lightest and smallest he's ever seen, and he's not concerned at all that it's the precursor of a subungual melanoma. He says the smallest subungual melanoma he knows of was 4 mm wide, and this is barely 1 mm, and he says the color is all wrong for melanoma. He also said it doesn't go down below the cuticle line, another thing they look at.

He did take a picture of it, though, and said that he wants to look at it again in 6 months, if it's still there. He says if it's still there in six months, but hasn't changed at all, then he'll not need to see it again. He said it's about 50/50 whether or not I'll always have this or not. He said if it leans towards classic hematoma, it could be gone in the next six months (he said if the injury was below the cuticle line to begin with then it could take up to a year for the injury to work itself out). He said if it's an injury induced melanonychia, then it means I damaged the matrix to the point where there will always be a void that will be darker as it grows.

He also told me to stop googling things that were only going to worry me to pieces.

 
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