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CLL Support Association
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toenail fungus

Hello I would like a little input about a toe nail fungus I have had for about a year and a half.I have told my family Dr about it twice and he told me the only thing that would take it away is a very expensive drug that my insurance would not cover.I have tried over the counter items but ,my whole big toe nail is crusty and crumbling away ,lately at night my toe is throbbing any advice ?

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Oral antifungal drugs?

These drugs are often the first choice because they clear the infection more quickly than do topical drugs. Options include terbinafine (Lamisil) and itraconazole (Sporanox). These drugs help a new nail grow free of infection, slowly replacing the infected part.

It is a wuite long treatment often 6-12 weeks and the results can take months, for new nails to grow...

These drugs have side effects as well, so you need to be monitored by your doctor..

More

mayoclinic.org/diseases-con...

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Thank you Cllcanada that is helpful .I am not one to complain about every ache and pain but I am very dismayed with family DR and hematologist .I have pretty good insurance and I bet one of these oral drugs would be covered

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Vicks VapoRub works very well on toe fungus for me. I too have a crusty big toe in the right - can’t wear nail polish any more as fungus grows under it. Big problem I have for last couple months is hematoma under left big toe now with occasional pain. Hem/onc MD unconcerned. I may have stubbed the toe but do not remember anything traumatic. My next step is to seepidiatrist. Best to you.

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thank you for the advice I will give vicks a try

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The problems are the side effects that can be severe. I would rather stay with the bad nail than risk the side effects.

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If you are having pain you should see a foot doctor to make sure there is nothing other than fungus causing your problem. Fungus usually doesn't cause the toe to throb. You can get a secondary bacterial infection under a toe nail however that would require antibiotics. Sometimes if your nail is severely involved with fungus, the foot doctor may suggest removing the nail.

There are many kinds of fungi/yeast that can cause this disorder. Some respond to medications better than others. The oral medications are metabolized in the liver so liver function tests are often monitored during treatment. Years ago, when I was working and had access to drug samples, I tried two of the medications for a long period of time, with very little success. I also tried OTC topicals without success. So I knew there had to be a better way and started researching online (which can be dangerous). I saw that Vicks worked for many people although I never tried it. Then I saw that many essential oils have anti-fungal activity, although I was never a big fan of alternative therapies, I decided to try a couple. I was surprised that they actually worked! So do a little research and see what you can find. These clearly are not going to work for everyone and, as has already been mentioned, require long term use to see results. I think there are now some topical prescription anti-fungals that are painted on the nails.

I have used thyme and oregano essential oils. Also used lemon eucalyptus on my boyfriend with good results. Keep in mind that you should never put undiluted essential oils on your skin or nails (although I don't take my own advise). They should always be diluted in a carrier oil such as fractionated coconut oil, jojoba oil etc. Make sure you clear anything you do with your hematologist, especially if you are being treated for CLL.

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I do have a throbbing pain that wakes me up .I have put off going to foot DR because I think I am afraid they will want to remove my nail.Thank you for your advice .I did try tea tree oil for a few months but it did not help also tried the paint ,since other dr]s are not concerned maybe foot DR is the answer .thanks again.Pumpkin

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I tried tea tree oil also and it didn't work for me either. I was surprised that it didn't. It's unfortunately a trial and error situation with hopefully success in the end. Best wishes.

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Try laser toenail treatments. Not cheap but very effective. No drugs which is good. see Tired sole ad on the internet Ottawa.

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I have the aforementioned toenail fungus and my solution is to use a robust nail file and sand it down when it starts to grow and become really thick and crusty. Over the years it has spread to the nails on the other toes on that foot, so I just periodically have to do toenail maintenance. But I’m a dude and luckily men’s feet are not really considered a huge part of our charm.

But my solution would not be so good if one were desirous of having attractive feet with nicely painted toenails.

Best of luck, but there do not seem to be any really good solutions.

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I do like to have pretty feet so this is horrible lol.thank you

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Had one - treated it with over the counter toenail fungus paint. I had no experience in the beginning so even though it has shown signs of growing away, 6 months on it actually expanded on my toenail. Then I went all in - I have cut all the part with fungus and applied the paint religiously 2 times a day. The nail eventually grew healthy - the whole process took 1.5 years.

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I have had the same - and was given a toenail paint by my GP. That was in May and I can see that about a third of the bad growth has grown out. I think filing the nails helps as the paint gets further down in to the nail bed. Hoping mine look halfway decent for this summer!

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Thank you .I hope we both have pretty feet by summer

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Have your toe nails sanded with sandpaper if possible with mechanic help and then spray Canesten a Bayer product.

Do this regularly

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I had this problem a few years back - I was prescribed an oral drug (free on the NHS in the UK - I forget what it was). I had to take it every day for several months - it worked - the fungus disappeared.

Interestingly, a friend - a very experienced GP - was surprised by the result. It sounded as if his patients often failed to get a cure, but reading between the lines, it sounded as if they weren't careful about taking the pills every single day.

So -it can be done!

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I've had the same experience as MelioraDay. My problem with toenail fungus improves when I apply thyme and oregano oil in a carrier oil at night under a sock. But I'm too lazy to use it consistently. Oh well, no one to blame but myself. I also noticed that back before treatment when I was drinking gallons of green tea and taking EGCG, my nail fungus improved. I was treated with V + O a year or so ago, and now that the CLL is beat way back, my nail fungus is slowly improving on its own. Maybe that's because of my immune system is healthier overall.

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So happy to hear that your CLL is beat way back.Take care Pumpkin

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I dont want to sound flippant but toenail fungus may be harder to cure than CLL! Laser did not work for me. The pill can hurt the liver so I did not try. I think for us it is an immunity issue as well.

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I do agree ,Never had this problem before CLL

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I don’t have experience with this but I heard at my nail salon that the brown Listerine soaks will work on nail fungus. At least it would be a cheap try. I think you’d need to soak at least twice a day until you notice a difference. When your feet hurt, everything hurts. Good luck.

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Thank you I am willing to try anything ,just scared of having nail removed

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Tiger balm. Cheep and very helpful

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I have had toenail fungus at least as long as CLL (diagnosed 2003) but fortunately no pain. Teatree oil irritated my toes so badly I had to stop with no results. Two different Prescription medicines (generic and brand name) had no results either. Vick’s vapor rub didn’t work either. I will research some of the other ones recommended above. Thanks

Woodfin

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Thank you Woodfin I appreciate that

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YW

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Had it long before my cll.. don't remember the specific med but as I recall was told it was hard on the liver... if it isn't one thing it's another

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So true

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Try soaking your nails in a solution of bleach and water. Unfortunately, I've never measured the ratio I use, but make it fairly strong and kind of push some under the nail. I used this to rid myself of a nasty case I had on my fingernails (after going to a manicurist...). Then I used it on my toenails and after years of nothing else working, this did the trick. My husband is now going to try it. It's so cheap, it's worth a try!

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Had fungus and infection of thumb nail. Hand specialist said hydrogen peroxide in warm water to soak. I’ve tried on feet and also seemed to work.

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Having had toenail fungus for 10+ years and CLL for 3+ years, is it plausible that a chronic fungal infection could produce and continually stimulate a clonal population of B-cells? That's one of my theories.

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Pumpkin 48,

Based on the fact that you are asking this question in a CLL Forum, I must assume that you are a CLL patient. If you are receiving treatment for CLL please be warned that many of the CLL medications have very dangerous drug interactions with oral antifungal agents. I would make sure you discuss any potential treatment with your CLL physician not just a dermatologist or foot specialist.

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Yes I do have Cll two and a half years,Still on watch and waite.Thanks for that important information.

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I had something similar. Toenail area on Big toe throbbed like mad constantly. I tried all sorts to ease it and no doctor could see why. I eventually had nail removed which was so painful but no infection found. Took 6 months for nail to grow back. I had trouble walking. Try bathing foot in Epsom salts. I find my pain threshold is very low. One thing replaces another :(

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I think I would rather deal with the toe throbbing,having nail removed scares me .thank you for the advice

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I see that some comments posit a possible link between the fungus and CLL. FWIW, I had the fungus very many years before CLL - maybe 25 years - so in my case at last I'd strongly suggest that there was no link.

Whether or not having CLL makes the fungus harder to treat is a different issue - it may well be the case, but I have no view or information on that.

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I have had toenail fungus for many years, primarily due to many years of tennis. Bottom line, it’s best to manage it by getting pedicure every few months and soaking in Epsom salts 15 min everyday. File down toenails if they get thick & start to grow into skin (ingrown). Too risky to take pills, especially with CLL. Good Luck!

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