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Ingrown Toenails & Nail Surgery

An ingrown toenail, is often described as ‘digging in’ or causing ‘pressure.’ Ingrown toenails can occur due to damage to the nail, cutting the nail inappropriately, picking the nail, or could be due to the shape of the nails which is often hereditary. 

If you think you may have an ingrown toenail, it’s important to be assessed by the Podiatrist to decide what treatment will be best for you. 

Conservative Treatment

If you have a mild ingrown toenails, or have never had this problem before generally conservative treatment will be performed.

Conservative treatment will involve general nail cutting, to free up the nail edge, in which sterile instruments are used. Generally dressing changes with the use of antiseptic cream will be explained and an instruction sheet will be given for this. Conservative treatment may require ongoing maintenance, depending on the shape of the toenail, severity and duration of the ingrown toenail. 

Nail Surgery

Nail surgery is a common procedure and is performed under local anaesthetic for an ingrown toenail. Nail surgery is performed in a sterile environment with sterile instruments. Surgery may be needed if an ingrown toenail repeatedly gets infected or if it inhibits work, sporting activities or other activities you like to participate in.

At Step Forward Podiatry the surgeries we perform under local anaesthetic are:

  • ‘Partial Nail Avulsion’- small part of the side of the nail is removed 
  • ‘Total Nail Avulsion’- performed for numerous conditions, where the full nail needs to be removed

Depending on the condition of the nail, chemical matrixectomy can be used so that the particular part of the nail does not grow back again.  This is a minor procedure which is often done in the Podiatrists room and takes around one hour. 

This procedure stops the side of the nail from curling around and digging in, as the chemical applied inhibits the growth of the nail. These procedures leave no scarring, and leaves the majority of the nail in place resulting in good aesthetics. 

As with any surgical procedure, there are some risks and complications involved, however this procedure is known to be very safe with minimal risk, and minimal pain. The most common complication is post-operative infection, however this can be easily minimised with good post-operative management and care given. This will be talked over with you and an information sheet given before the surgery is performed. 

We use the latest technology to provide personalised assessments and comprehensive treatment for all our patients. No referral required, call us today or book online: