Fungal Nail Disease / Onychomycosis
(aka Tinea Unguium)
Onychomycosis / Fungal Nail Infection in Las Vegas is now treatable with our quasi-long pulsed mode Nd:Yag LASER at Strimling Dermatology, Laser & Vein Institute.
What is Onychomycosis / Tinea Unguium?
Onychomycosis or Tinea Unguium is the medical term for fungal infection of the the nail or nail plate. Onychomycosis is associated with discoloration and / or abnormal growth characteristics of the nail with or without symptoms.
Different subtypes of onychomycosis are based on nail appearance or location of disease, infecting fungal organism and/or extent of disease; including,
- distal (lateral) subungual onychomycosis (DSO or DSLO))
- proximal subungual onychomycosis (PSO)
- white superficial onychomycosis (WSO)
- endonyx onychomycosis (EO)
- candidal onychomycosis (CO)
- total dystrophic onychomycosis
Onychomycosis reportedly affects 2-3% of the population and increases to 15% for those between the ages of 40 and 60. Onychomycosis is unusual in children. Generally, incidence increases with age. All races are affected. Males are affected more commonly than females.
Onychomycosis is responsible for over 1/2 of all nail disorders; and is the most common adult nail disease. Toenails are much more likely infected than fingernails.
Onychomycosis infection is acquired by invasion of the nail plate from adjacent infected skin or directly through the surface of the nail plate by pathogenic fungal species, specifically acquired from direct contact with an infected source. Such species are ubiquitous in our environment. Age, diabetes, peripheral vascular disease, HIV infection, and other immune modulating disease or medications are predisposing factors.
Initially, onychomycosis is usually asymptomatic (without symptoms); hence, most patients seek treatment for cosmetic reasons. However, long-standing / advanced infection may cause numbness, discomfort, tenderness or pain; resulting in difficulty standing, walking or exercising. Fungal nail infections may be a risk factor for bacterial cellulitis, a more dangerous skin and subcutaneous infection. Patients may also report decreased self-esteem and / or social interaction.
Treatment Options for Onychomycosis
Treatment options for onychomycosis include: topical anti-fungal medications, oral anti-fungal medications, debridement, surgery and most recently, laser therapy. Topicals require diligent, long-term use and are the least effective solo treatment. Oral anti-fungals offer better cure rates, but rarely may cause toxic liver hepatitis and thus, are not usually recommended for asymptomatic disease. Debridement / surgical nail removal alone is fraught with high reccurence rates; although less so when combined with topical anti-fungals in the re-growth period. Surgery involves discomfort and recuperation. Fungal Nail Laser therapy is effective (up to 90% success) and FDA approved. Quasi-long pulsed 1064 infra-red wavelength lasers appear most effective. Short pulsed q-switched 1064 lasers may also be effective. Mode of action may involve direct phototoxic or heat derived fungal destruction. Laser treatment protocols continue to evolve with this novel therapy.
Our current protocol is to treat all nails of the affected extremity monthly for 3 or more consecutive months and re-evaluate at 3 months post treatment. Because fungal nail disease is so difficult to cure, prone to recurrence and combination therapy increases success, we also advise concurrent topicals.
Fungal nail laser therapy is quick, safe, effective and typically painless. All motivated patients with onychomycosis are candidates. Insurance does not cover fungal laser treatments. Please contact us for price.
Download our Toenail Fungus Laser Treatment Brochure for more info.
Call us at (702) 243-6400 to schedule a complimentary laser fungal nail consult.
At Strimling Dermatology, Laser & Vein Institute of Summerlin, Las Vegas, fungal nail laser therapy is performed (or supervised) by our founder, board certified Dermatologist, Dr. Strimling. With over 20 years experience, Dr. Strimling is among the most experienced Medical and Cosmetic Laser Dermatologists in Las Vegas. Voted or selected among the “Best Dermatologists” in Las Vegas and America multiple times, Dr. Strimling has also been selected an “Award Winning Cosmetic Surgeon”.
Contact Us at (702) 243-6400 to schedule a personalized consultation.
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Strimling Dermatology, Laser & Vein Institute of Summerlin, Las Vegas treats patients from all over the Clark County valley, including Henderson, Green Valley, Anthem, North Las Vegas, Boulder City as well as Summerlin, Las Vegas, Nevada and the rest of the southwest. We have also seen patients from all over the country and world.