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Fungal Nail Infections

Do you or someone you know have a discoloured or thick toenail?

Updated: April 2020


  • Fungal nail infections may cause embarrassment when wearing thongs, sandals or going barefoot

  • If left untreated the infection may spread over the nail or to other toenails

  • Have your nails professionally assessed, diagnosed and treated by Inform Podiatry

Symptoms & Signs

  • The nail may have a yellow colour under the nail or a white colour on top

  • Usually there is no pain from a fungal nail infection

  • The nail may be thickened compared to other nails

  • There may be a buildup of skin under the nail

  • The nail may be loose (not attached to the skin under the nail)


  • Not all discoloured nails or thick nails are fungal.

  • A pathology test is required to confirm a fungal nail infection

  • A comprehensive history and assessment will help confirm the cause of the nail change, other causes include:

  • Trauma causing bleeding under the nail - usually a blackish colour

  • Trauma long term - may cause a thickened and yellowish colour to the nail

  • White colour extending under the nail - separation of the nail plate from the skin under the nail

  • Psoriasis can cause nail changes that look fungal


  • All treatments are more successful if the discoloured nail is cut back to the normal nail and thick nails are thinned down

  • There are 4 main treatment options

  • Option 1: no treatment, if the nail grows faster than the fungus then the nail will "push" the fungal infection out

  • Option 2: topical treatment, usually a liquid anti-fungal to paint on the nail

  • Option 3: a course of prescribed anti-fungal tablets

  • Option 4: laser treatment

  • Have the cause of any nail change professionally assessed, diagnosed and treated by Inform Podiatry, book an appointment today.

Do you know someone with foot or ankle pain?

I would love to help them.

Disclaimer: This sheet was researched and developed by Inform Podiatry to provide general information. Inform Podiatry encourages everyone to receive an individual assessment, diagnosis and treatment plan for their foot or ankle pain.

Inform Podiatry

Phone: 1300 602 674

Fax: 07 3041 0346

52 Isedale St Wooloowin QLD 4030

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