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It is best to treat an ingrown toenail as soon as you notice the symptoms. If caught early enough, your GP or podiatrist may recommend a self-care program to prevent it from getting worse. Unfortunately if this proves to be unsuccessful a surgical process such as the ones described below.
The most common surgical procedure for treating ingrown toenails involves only removing part of the toenail. This is called partial toenail avulsion. The edges of your toenail are cut away to make the toenail narrower.
Occasionally, the folds of skin on either side of the toenail are also removed. The whole toenail will only usually be removed if the nail is thickened or misshapen. Both procedures are carried out under local anaesthetic.
We would always recommend permanent removal of the Ingrowing toenail as there is almost always a recurrence of the condition if the nail is allowed to regrow.
To reduce the risk of your ingrown toenail reccurring, your podiatrist may suggest removing the cells in your nail bed. These cells can be either surgically removed, or destroyed using a chemical called phenol.
Ingrown toenail myth
It is a common myth that if you cut a notch shaped like a ‘V’ in the top of the affected toenail, it will grow back together, and reduce the curve in the nail. However, this is a myth.