December 14, 2009,
D.M. asks from Glenview, IL on December 11, 2009
M.M. answers from Chicago on December 11, 2009
D. - Below is a copy of a reply I gave to Lisa O. in 8/09. Look it up in my history. She has 30+ replies to essentially the same question as yours.
I picked up a toe nail fungus (onychomycosis) almost 5 years ago. I went to a new nail salon for a pedicure when I was 9 months pregnant. It's my guess that this is where I picked up the infection. My PCP took a culture of the nail and sure enough, it came back as a fungus. After having liver function tests (blood tests), I was placed on anti fungal oral medication (Lamisil) daily for 4 months - one month longer than the usual course of treatment. The medication is very expensive and insurance was abit relunctant to pay for this medication especially since success rates are low. I had to go through a pharmacy review type process for reimbursement for the extended treatment period. Between that and samples from the podiatrist, I was able to obtain the necessary course of treatment. Additionally, I also applied Vicks VapoRub to the infected nail bed like others have suggested. It did help somewhat but I wasn't the most compliant as I would frequently forget (busy mom with young kids). All in all, the treatments did nada, nothing, zilich. Eventually, I had a small portion of toe nail surgicially removed. Thankfully, the infection was completely removed and there has been no reoccurence. My nail now looks normal again. That experience was a huge learning experience to me about taking proper preventative measures....never barefoot in public pools, showers, etc and being very cautious at nail salons to name a few. I don't know if I will ever feel comfortable getting another pedicure again.
My advice to you is 1) go to a podiatrist and 2) do the best you can to get a handle on this now especially if the infection is mild. These things get **nasty** as one ages.
Best of luck,
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M.H. answers from Springfield on December 13, 2009
I am a nail tech and white spots aren't usually fungus. I suggest going to a podiatrist. If it is fungus it is highly contagious and needs to be checked out immediatley! Good Luck!
A.R. answers from Chicago on December 11, 2009
I have heard that tea-tree oil can be helpful, or using Vicks Vapo-rub with socks on at night every night.
There is also something called Absorbine Jr that pharmacies sell, that is a roll-on ointment for joint paint, etc. that is supposed to help with fungus issues.
T.B. answers from Chicago on December 13, 2009
K.S. answers from Chicago on December 14, 2009
Tea Tree oil worked for me.
J.W. answers from Chicago on December 11, 2009
Yep, it's a fungus. I also got this fungus from a nail salon. I tried some over the counter remedies, but none worked. I used to work for a podiatrist and he prescribed Lamisil. I know it's a medication and you said you didn't want to take it--but it's only for 3 months and it knocks the fungus right out. My podiatrist said the over the counter stuff rarely works for anyone, and it's just a waste of money. Good luck!
L.T. answers from Chicago on December 12, 2009
I had something similar happen. The foot doctor told me to applly Vicks Vaporub 2x a day using a cotton swab to clean nails. It may take a while to work but it does.
L.B. answers from Chicago on December 11, 2009
I dont know how well these work:
I recently overheard my cousin who's a pharmaceutical rep tell her aunt to avoid the prescription stuff and use 2-3 drops of chlorine bleach on her toenail each night.
A foot Dr told my mother to rub Vicks vaporub into the toenail every night for a year! She gave up & used a prescription for 3 months that cost $150 a month.
I do know if you ignore it, it gets really ugly.