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20 Aug 2015

Fungal Nail Treatments

Fungal nails have a crumbly texture and a brown-ish yellow-ish colour that gradually creeps through the nail.  In severe cases there is a distinctive odour.  Usually a fungal infection enters a damaged of nail, such as occurs after trauma from sport and outdoor activities, or tight shoes, or even too nail varnish.

The bad news is that it is contagious, multiple nails can infected, particularly if damage occurs to other nails.  It can spread to the other foot and to other members of the house-hold, but the the good news is that it is cannot infect any other tissue than nail, though often there is a separate infection of the skin of the foot present.

In the past, it was very difficult to treat fungal nails.  Fungistatic oils, gels and creams rely on reducing the growth of the infection, they need to be continued until the infected portion has grown out.  Oral medication is associated with side effects so many patients prefer not to take these.

We now offer two safe and effective fungal nail treatments: PACT Light Therapy and Clearanail.

PACT Light Therapy

Fungal nail infections can now be treated using PACT Light Therapy, which does not involve taking drugs, and has no side effects. PACT (Photodynamic Antimicrobial Therapy) is a fungicidal treatment for fungal nails, meaning that it that destroys any fungal cells it contacts.

The cell walls of fungal cells are stained with an oxygen-containing blue dye and a very bright red light in a is shone on the nail for almost 10 minutes till the oxygen in the dye has been activated.  Activated oxygen destroys the fungal cell as in the diagram below.  Please click on it and it will sharpen up.

PACT treatment is completely harmless to humans, including diabetics, as the activated dye does enter our cells.

Three treatments to each nail over a 7 day period are required, followed by AT LEAST three further treatments at weekly or monthy  intervals in mild cases, ranging up to 12 in very severe cases.  It is best to catch the infection early and before it has spread to other nails.  It is to be expected that some nails prove resistant to a total cure, though they do improve significantly during and following the treatment period.

Anti fungal sprays should also be used throughout the treatment period, and continue after the infection is cleared up to reduce the chance of re-infection.  If it does re-infect, further treatment is safe.

Click here for more details.

Clearanail Fungal Nail Treatment

Another effective fungal nail treatment is Clearanail.