Laser fungal nail treatment
Onychomycosis (Laser treatment for fungal nails)
Medicine has benefited significantly from the use of lasers. Specifically within dermatology, advances in laser technology have allowed the development of lasers to target fungal cells. Over the past 5 years the advances have been significant- initially using heat delivered with the Nd-YAG. Lasers utilise this modality based on applying heat to the nail allowing it to pass through and vaporise the fungus with the energy.
Fungal is contained within the nail complex and the lasers are able to target these fungal cells directly without the risks involved. This is an alternative treatment when oral medication or local external ointment fail to clear the fungal. These lasers have no detrimental effect on healthy skin or nail and requires no anaesthetic. They are not surgical and there is no recovery period or effect on activity after treatment.
Treatment: Recommended 3 sessions every 4 to 6 weeks and after 3 months if the nail grows healthy then no more treatments are required.
Initial treatment should be repeated if the nail regrows with fungus.
Foot care during treatment
After your treatment within 2 to 8 weeks you should see a new healthy nail start to grow from the base of your nail-bed. This is a sign that the treatment is working. The old infected nail should begin to grow out and can be clipped away over the course of a few months. Speak to your therapist if a new nail doesn't start to grow after 2 to 3 weeks of treatment to arrange a further treatment.
Foot care tips
There are some things you can do to help keep the infection at bay during and after treatment.
These are listed below:
· Keep your feet cool and dry- use a hairdryer on the cool air setting and wear shoes and socks that allow your feet to breathe.
· Wear clean cotton socks and avoid wearing trainers.
· Treat athlete's foot with anti fungal medicine as soon as possible to avoid the infection spreading to your nails.
· Clip your nails to keep them short
· Use a separate pair of clippers or scissors to cut the infected nail to avoid spreading the infection to other nails
· Wear well-fitting shoes without high heels or narrow toes.
· Maintain good foot hygiene
· Wear clean shower shoes when using a communal shower, steam room and around the swimming pool.
· Consider seeking treatment from a podiatrist if thickened toenails cause discomfort when walking.
· Consider replacing old footwear as it could be contaminated with fungal spores.
Preparation before treatment
Cut your nails short, remove nail varnish, bring the new socks and disinfected shoes.
Disinfect all your shoes, towels and sheets.