Ingrown Nail

One of the most painful and frequent foot ailments is an ingrown nail. There are three major causes of ingrown nails. The most common cause of getting an ingrown nail is improper trimming of the nails. If you round the nails or cut into the corners, your chances of getting an ingrown nail are much greater. Trauma is another cause of an Ingrown Nail, with improper fitting shoes as the third most common cause.

We often see ingrown nails with red skin growing over the nail itself with pus or drainage. If an infection is present, we will usually take a culture to determine the type of bacteria present, and we will typically prescribe an antibiotic and foot soaks. In some cases, we may provide temporary relief by trimming out a part of the nail. However, until the infection is gone, we usually leave the nail as is to prevent further infection.

Once the infection is gone, a simple, quick in-office procedure can be performed to prevent the ingrown nail from returning. The procedure is done under local anesthesia where a portion of the nail is removed; then, the nail growth center for that part of the nail is either surgically removed or chemically destroyed. Normally, no pain medication is needed. The old saying in Podiatry is, Once you have an ingrown nail, you will always get another. However, we have found that after this procedure, the chance of your ingrown nail returning is very low. Normal skin will fill in where the sliver of nail was removed.

If you have nail pain, dont wait because it usually wont go away on its own. Contact our office at or call, 713-467-8886 and Dr. Jeffrey Bowman will be glad to get you the help you need.

Category: Foot Problems

Tags: Infections, Nail Problems, Toe Pain