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Skin Care and Diseases

Fingernail change

03/23/2006

Question:

MY FINGERNAILS ARE CHANGING. THE USE TO LIE FLAT IN THE BED. NOW THEY ARE HUMPED UP AN THE NAIL CLAWS DOWN. IS MY BODY MISSING SOMETHING?

Answer:

Your description of progressive change in your nails is of some concern.  My interpretation of your description suggests that you are developing clubbing of your nails.  This frequently is associated with a number of disorders, but particularly cardio-respiratory difficulties.  You should be seen by (1) your board certified dermatologist and (2) a highly trained internist.  You need a complete physical examination, a number of x-ray studies, and possibly endocrine studies.  Please DO NOT wait.  While it does not appear to be an absolute emergency, urgency should be your by-word.

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Response by:

Charles L Heaton, MD
Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati