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Old 10-07-2007, 01:10 PM   #1
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Questions about toenail fungus, and toenails in general

I posted here a few times in the past month or so about Vicks Vaporub and toenail fungus. Just a quick summary- I injured my toenail on my right big toe about fifteen years ago (dropped a desk on it in 4th grade, the nail cracked and was completely detatched from the nail bed. It got stuck back on my toe by all the dried blood, and took months for the old nail to come off and then even longer before a new nail grew in) at the same time, I'd gotten toenail fungus, so my toenail has never been the same because of the injury and the additional fungus. A month ago, I started applying Vicks to the separation point twice a day for the fungus. I've been trimming the nail continually so that I know the Vicks is getting to the separation point. Yesterday when I trimmed the nail, I trimmed off the last of the thick part of my nail. The part that's growing in now at the separation point looks like it's a normal thickness. My nail is also a normal color now. Does this mean I've gotten rid of the fungus (I think it was mostly just at the top part of my nail)? Can I stop applying the Vicks now?

Though, at the bottom, where my nail is just growing in, there's a ridge (I don't know if you'd call it a ridge- it's indented, not raised) across my nail. I always get these, and they grow out, and then another one develops behind it at the bottom of my nail. Is this from fungus, or from my injury?

Also, when I trimmed my nail yesterday, the nail was able to be trimmed past where I thought was the separation point. part of my nail bed it exposed, and it doesn't hurt. Why is this? Also, my nail bed is raised. The nail bed is very thick. Will it flatten out now that the fungus is gone, or do you think this is a result of the injury?

Because my toe healed from the injury and aquired the fungus at the same time (and I didn't realize it was fungus until a couple years ago), I'm not really sure which characteristics are from the injury, and whick ones are from the fungus I've had for so long.

Thanks so much for ay answers!!

Last edited by SentenceDoing; 10-07-2007 at 01:11 PM.

 
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Old 10-07-2007, 05:14 PM   #2
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Re: Questions about toenail fungus, and toenails in general

To begin with, the fungus is not "gone" just because the new emerging nail plate looks healthy. The fungal spores live deep within the nail bed tissue and you need to continue applying the treatment until the new nail has completely grown in and covers all of the nail bed. This can take up to a year or more depending on your genetics for nail growth.

As for the damage to the nail bed, yes, it is most likely from the injury and not the infection.

 
Old 10-09-2007, 11:55 AM   #3
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Re: Questions about toenail fungus, and toenails in general

Thanks for your reply.
I guess I'm confused about toenail fungus. Does the fungus infect the nail itself, or the tissue under the nail? I was thinking it lived underneath the nail and affected the nail plate growing over it, which is why I was wondering if the rest of my nail looks healthy (and the tissue underneath), why I have to keep applying the Vicks until the whole nail has grown out from the bottom... I mean, why not just let the part that looks infected grow out?

 
Old 10-09-2007, 06:15 PM   #4
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Re: Questions about toenail fungus, and toenails in general

Because the infection lives deep within the soft tissues of the nail bed AND in the layers of the nail plate. Simply removing the infected nail is not enough to kill all the spores. Keep applying the medication until the nail has completely replaced itself.

Fungal spores feed off the proteins in the nail plate layers and they live in BOTH the nail plate and the nail bed. They can go deeper into the nail bed than the nail plate, bu tthey 'live' in both places. Since they eat the proteins in the nail plate as food, this is why the nail plate separates from the nail bed. Gross, but true!

Last edited by Marti; 10-09-2007 at 06:17 PM.

 
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