Is toenail laser treatment painful?
The focused, targeted laser light beam will have no effect on healthy tissue, and will only target the infected areas. A patient undergoing laser nail treatment for fungus removal procedures should experience no discomfort during or after the treatment.
How does the nail fungus laser work?
A toenail fungus laser works by shining a focused beam of light in a narrow range, more commonly known as a laser, into a toenail infected with fungus (onychomycosis). The laser penetrates the toenail and vaporizes fungus embedded in the nail bed and nail plate where toenail fungus exists. The toenail fungus targeted laser is tuned to a specific frequency that effects cells that are responsible for infection. There are various manufacturers with lasers currently available or soon to be available. Each manufacturer may have a specific wavelength, wavelengths, pulse frequency or duration schedule that they use. When you consult with your physician they can go over the details of the device they use treat the toenails infected with fungus.
How long does the toenail laser treatment take?
Although specific treatment schedules will be determined by your provider, it typically takes approximately 10 minutes to treat a infected big toe’s fungus. If you have more than one toe infected with toenail fungus, it may take longer. Laser toenail fungus treatment patients generally require three to four sessions.
Does toenail fungus laser treatment really work?
Clinical studies to date reveal that over 80% of treated patients show significant improvement when using certain types of lasers. * In most cases the nail fungus pathogen is completely eliminated.
How soon will I see improvement to my toenails after treatment with a laser?
On average, any toenail will replace itself every 6 to 9 months through natural growth. Healthy new growth will be visible within the first 3 months as the new nail replaces the old. However, follow up treatment with an anti-fungal cream with L-arginine has shown an increase of up to 100% in the speed of healthy nail replacement. Your provider can make recommendations for a post laser treatment toenail cream.
Is the laser toenail fungus treatment safe?
In clinical studies on a variety of lasers there have been no adverse reactions, injuries, disabilities or known side effects from use of lasers to treat toenail fungus infection. As you may know, the use of oral nail fungus medication available today for treatment of fungus nails carries with it possible systemic involvement (commonly the liver and kidney). This laser toenail treatment does not.
Do I have to take any drugs as part of the laser toenail fungus treatment?
No. No drugs or topical ointments are required. Your provider may recommend additional products to improve results and prevent against re-infection.
What do I need to do to prepare for the laser toenail fungus treatment?
All nail polish or nail shellac must be removed. If nails are especially thick, it is recommended that the patient debride the nail to thin the treatment area, allowing for a more effective treatment. White Pearl Medical Spa does not perform nails services such as the filing of the nails, nor is it allowed to be done in the office. It is recommended that patients request this service from a nail salon, cost is usually minimal, or file them at home prior to the treatment. The nail can still be treated if the nail is abnormally thick, however the desired result may take longer to achieve and additional treatments may be necessary.
Will I be able to walk after laser toenail fungus treatment?
You will be able to walk out of the office just as well as you walked in, you might even have a smile on your face. The laser toenail fungus treatment will not harm you in any way. Toenails are dead cells, the laser targets living fungus inside the nail. During the procedure a technician will ask you to indicate any discomfort, and if it is felt will adjust the laser treatment accordingly. Please note that each provider will determine the specific course of action depending on their diagnosis and the equipment involved.
What is the cost for laser toenail treatment?
Cost vary by factors such as the severity of the infection, thickness of nails and the individual treatment plan.
Does my insurance pay for this?
Currently the laser toenail fungus procedure is not included as a health insurance benefit in any plan that we know of; however, the initial foot consultation is complimentary. Insurance plans will consider the laser toenail fungus treatment a cosmetic / aesthetic procedure and therefore does not provide coverage. If you have a Health Savings Account (HSA), Medical Individual Retirement Account (Medical IRA) or other Flexible Medical Spending Accounts (Medical FSA), you can pay for the laser fungus treatment with these funds. Otherwise, payment can be made with cash, credit or debit card. Some patients who have exhausted alternative treatment options have reported receiving partial reimbursement from their insurance, but that would be something determined between the patient and the patient’s insurance provider. White Pearl Medical Spa does not accept insurance, nor does the office provide insurance forms, etc.
Many people don’t realize they have a fungal nail problem and, therefore, don’t seek treatment. Yet, fungal toenail infections are a common foot health problem and can persist for years without ever causing pain. The disease, characterized by a change in a toenail’s color, is often considered nothing more than a mere blemish. Left untreated, however, it can present serious problems.
Also referred to as onychomycosis, fungal nails are infections underneath the surface of the nail, which may also penetrate the nail. Fungal nail infections are often accompanied by a secondary bacterial and/or yeast infection in or about the nail plate, which ultimately can lead to difficulty and pain when walking or running. Symptoms may include discoloration, brittleness, loosening, thickening, or crumbling of the nail.
A group of fungi, called dermophytes, easily attack the nail and thrive on keratin, the nail’s protein substance. In some cases, when these tiny organisms take hold, the nail may become thicker, yellowish-brown, or darker in color, and foul smelling. Debris may collect beneath the nail plate, white marks frequently appear on the nail plate, and the infection is capable of spreading to other toenails, the skin, or even the fingernails.
Nail bed injury may make the nail more susceptible to all types of infection, including fungal infection. Those who suffer chronic diseases, such as diabetes, circulatory problems, or immune-deficiency conditions, are especially prone to fungal nails. Other contributory factors may be a history of Athlete’s Foot or excessive perspiration.
You can prevent fungal nail infections by taking these simple precautions:
- Exercise proper hygiene and regularly inspect your feet and toes.
- Keep your feet clean and dry.
- Wear shower shoes in public facilities whenever possible.
- Clip nails straight across so that the nail does not extend beyond the tip of the toe.
- Use a quality foot powder (talcum, not cornstarch) in conjunction with shoes that fit well and are made of materials that breathe.
- Avoid wearing excessively tight hosiery, which promotes moisture. Socks made of synthetic fiber tend to “wick” away moisture faster than cotton or wool socks, especially for those with more active lifestyles.
- Disinfect home pedicure tools and don’t apply polish to nails suspected of infection.
Depending on the type of infection you have, over-the-counter liquid antifungal agents may not prevent a fungal infection from recurring. A topical or oral medication may need to be prescribed, and the diseased nail matter and debris removed, a process called debridement. Note: Please consult your physician before taking any medications.
In severe cases, surgical treatment may be required to remove the infected nail. Permanent removal of a chronically painful nail, which has not responded to any other treatment, permits the fungal infection to be cured and prevents the return of a deformed nail.
Information About Laser Toenail Fungus Treatments
Laser treatment for toenail fungus is a revolutionary breakthrough procedures in treating nail fungalinfection. Laser treatment for toenail fungus does not cause cuts or burns and thus has the advantage of patients being treated without reported discomfort.
Laser treatment for toenail fungus studies that have been done are extremely encouraging, and to date, no known side effects have been found. Long-term effects for laser treatment for toenail fungus seem just as promising. Coupled with good hygiene of the toes, and follow up treatment with a topical anti-fungal creams, patients should experience good, long-term result in the elimination of the toe nail fungus.
Laser nail fungus treatment procedure surpasses those of the more dangerous medications with an effective success rate around 80% in clinical studies showing the fungus to be destroyed, safely.