Clearer, Healthier Looking Nails
Onychomycosis, or nail fungus, affects approximately 36 million people in the US. While some people are genetically prone to it, others, may be more likely to get it due to damp feet or foot deformities such as bunions. Nail fungus is often a cosmetic concern, but over time it can also cause pain or abnormal growth.
At the Foot Wellness Center, we use a state of the art plastic surgery and dermatology endorsed FDA approved Palomar Icon laser.
For patients, laser procedures offer an alternative to oral medication, which may have certain health risks, and topical treatments, which may have poor efficacy.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
The Laser kills fungus that lives in and under the nail as well as in the nail root. A laser passes through the nail without damaging it or the surrounding skin. Although the existing nail will not become clear immediately upon treatment, the new nail growth will appear normal, as the fungus will no longer be present.
HOW SUCCESSFUL IS THE TREATMENT?
Clinical studies have demonstrated laser significantly reduces toenail fungal infections, leading to improved appearance. These studies also report no adverse effects or injuries associated with this treatment.
IS THE PROCEDURE PAINFUL?
Intermittently, patients may experience a sensation of heat. No local anesthetic is required.
IS THERE A RECOVERY PERIOD?
One of the advantages of this breakthrough procedure is that there is no down time. Patients walk in, walk out, and have no physical limitations following treatment.
HOW LONG DOES THE PROCEDURE TAKE?
The laser procedure usually takes approximately 15-45 minutes depending on the number of nails and the severity of the condition.
CAN THE FUNGUS GROW BACK?
Most fungus is killed after one treatment; however, as this fungus is commonly found in one's environment, the office will instruct you on post-procedure care that will greatly reduce the possibility of reinfection.
CAN I USE NAIL POLISH AFTER THE PROCEDURE?
Polish can be applied the day after treatment. It is important to remove all polish and nail decoration the day prior to treatment.
IS THIS COVERED BY MY INSURANCE?
Insurance plans consider this procedure aesthetic/cosmetic and therefore do not provide coverage. If you have a Health Savings Account, Medical IRA or other Flexible Medical Spending Accounts, you can pay for the procedure with these funds. Otherwise, payment can be made with cash,check, credit, or debit card.
Before and After
The laser is a specially designed laser that penetrates the nail, skin and soft tissue, killing the fungus in the nail bed and root that leads to the unsightly nail appearance.
The procedure typically requires one treatment with little or no discomfort and is performed in an office setting with no anesthetic being necessary. The gentle laser light beam has no effect on healthy tissue and treats only the infected area of the toe. This eliminates the need for oral antifungal medications, which have demonstrated potential side effects, including liver damage.
Clinical studies show that the laser reduces fungal infection and promotes clear nail growth with a single treatment. It has demonstrated a success rate greater than that found with oral and/or antifungal medications.
To learn more about laser therapy, please speak with a podiatrist.