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Nail Diseases – Some Of The Common Finger Nail Problems

A nail is basically an appendage that grows out from the skin, at the tips of fingers and toes. When it comes to diseases, nails have their own specific set of conditions with unique signs and symptoms. Fingernails can often indicate the general health of an individual. Here is a list of common diseases that affect fingernails.

Yellow nail syndrome
For people who suffer from yellow nail syndrome, the nails become thick and the growth of new nails slows down. As the name suggests, the nails become yellowish in color. The nail could sometimes detach from the nail bed in certain places. The nails might also lack cuticles. Chronic bronchitis or other respiratory diseases could lead to this syndrome. Lymphedema or swelling of the hands could also give rise to this condition.

Spoon nails
The medical name for this condition is Koilonychia, which produces a depression in the middle of the nail plate. Hemochromatosis, a liver condition can produce spoon nails. Anemia or iron deficiency can also give rise to Koilonychia. It could also be a symptom of hypothyroidism or a heart disease.

Terry’s nails
This condition is characterized by a dark band on the tip of each fingernail. Aging can also produce this symptom. Several other serious conditions like diabetes, congestive heart failure or liver disease could also cause Terry’s nails.

Beau’s lines
This condition is characterized by indentations that run perpendicular to the direction of the nail’s growth. Either injury or severe illness can cause an interruption in the growth of the nail, which then causes the indentation. Peripheral vascular diseases or uncontrolled diabetes can cause Beau’s lines. Pneumonia, mumps, measles, or scarlet fever can also cause this condition. It could sometimes be a symptom of zinc deficiency as well.

Nail separation
Known as Onycholysis, this condition causes fingernails to become loose and separated from the nail bed. Thyroid disease or a skin condition known as psoriasis can cause nail separation. Certain infections and injuries can also cause this condition. Certain drugs and consumer products used on nails are also known to produce this condition.

Nail clubbing
This condition causes the fingertips to enlarge. Simultaneously, the nails around the tips of the fingers curve. Some types of lung diseases that cause low oxygen levels in the blood can cause this condition. Other ailments such as AIDS, liver disease, inflammatory bowel syndrome and cardiovascular diseases can also cause nail clubbing.

Nail pitting
Nail pitting is characterized by tiny depressions in the fingernails. The condition can be caused by Reiter’s syndrome, a disorder associated with connective tissue. Alopecia Areata, an autoimmune disorder that results in loss of hair can also be the cause of this condition. People who suffer from psoriasis often have nail pitting too. Psoriasis is a condition that produces scaly skin patches.

These are some of the ailments and diseases that can affect fingernails. As it is evident from the above passages, nail diseases can often be an indication of some other condition that affects the body.

Toan Ho