Medical Definition of Ringworm of the nails

  • Medical Author:
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

Reviewed on 12/27/2018

Ringworm of the nails: The most common fungus infection of the nails, also called onychomycosis.

Onychomycosis makes the nails look white and opaque, thickened, and brittle. Those at increased risk for developing onychomycosis include:

  • People with diabetes;
  • People with disease of the small blood vessels (peripheral vascular disease); and
  • Women of any age who wear artificial nails (acrylic or "wraps").

Artificial nails increase the risk for onychomycosis because, when an artificial nail is applied, the nail surface is usually abraded with an emery board damaging it, emery boards can carry infection, and water can collect under the artificial nail creating a moist, warm environment favorable for fungal growth.

Alternative names for ringworm of the nails include tinea unguium and dermatophytic onychomycosis.

CONTINUE SCROLLING OR CLICK HERE FOR RELATED SLIDESHOW

IMAGES

Eczema Browse our medical image collection of allergic skin disorders such as psoriasis and dermatitis and more caused by allergies See Images

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors

Reviewed on 12/27/2018