Considering ingrown toenail surgery and want to learn more?
Have a reccurent ingrown toenail and dont know what to do?
Everything about how to treat an ingrown toenail, ingrown toenail surgery recovery and the options available to you. At The Foot Hub, Sydney, we take care of your feet.
Ingrown toenails are a common foot problem we see at The Foot Hub. It is reported that about 20% of people who present to a doctor for advice for a foot problem have an ingrown toenail. The treatment methods vary depending on how advanced the problem is and the individual needs of the patient too, so we’ll always tailor a treatment to you.
For patients whose ingrown toenail issues are long-term and recurring, ingrown toenail surgery is likely to be the best option. When conservative and non-invasive treatments are unsuccessful, surgery removing the nail edge (which doesn’t grow back) can be a better permanent solution to avoid continual discomfort and pain.
If your ingrown toenail problem is not chronic or recurring, visit our ingrown toenail treatment page to see some of the non-permanent options that are available to you.
INGrown toenail surgery is indicated for:
Types of Ingrown Toenail Surgery
PNA surgery permanently removes the side of the nail that is causing damage to the skin. It is a quick and routine procedure, normally used in simple cases of ingrown toenails that can’t be resolved with conservative treatments. It’s also preferred by podiatrists as the majority of the nail can be left attached.
TNA surgery permanently removes the entire nail, normally carried out only when a severely damaged or thickened toenail causes recurring problems that the more simple PNA surgery will not fix. This is not the preferred treatment, but in rare cases it can be necessary to avoid future problems.
Prior to booking in ingrown toenail surgery, patients should have a pre surgery assessment discuss suitability for surgery.
What is phenolisation?
Partial Nail Avulsion with phenolisation is the most common solution for ingrown toenails. Safe, simple and effective, it uses phenol (a mild acid) to destroy the nail matrix, with low levels of post-operative pain and infection. With a high success rate (98.5 per cent) and a natural-looking nail, this is the preferred treatment for the majority of our patients.
The liquid phenol is applied to the problem area for at least one minute, allowing the mild acid to destroy the nail matrix and remove the cause of the pain and discomfort. Phenol is safe and approved for use by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) in Australia.
It’s a safe procedure for use with diabetic patients or those suffering from vascular disease. Although there has not been much supporting evidence to suggest there are risk factors, the use of phenol treatments is not advised for pregnant or breastfeeding patients.
It is a quick and simple solution for painful ingrown nails. Once the toe is numbed, there are just four steps to follow.
- Step one – After the toe is numbed, a tourniquet is applied to limit blood flow (for better visibility and phenol efficacy) and the nail edge is cut and split from the nail plate.
- Step two – The cut nail edge is gently removed from the nail fold and any remaining fragments are removed. Extra tissue that has grown over the site will also be removed at this point.
- Step three – The phenol acid is applied to destroy the nail matrix (in three, 20 second applications) and the toenail is flushed with a clean solution.
- Step four – The tourniquet is removed, the toe dressed with an antibiotic ointment and bandaged, and you can go home and relax.