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Q. My skin beneath my thumbnail got exposed while biting my nails. Please help.

Answered by
Dr. Ashwini. V. Swamy
and medically reviewed by Dr. Vinodhini. J
This is a premium question & answer published on Jan 08, 2021

Hello doctor,

I am having a problem with my thumbnail. I usually wear fake gel nails. I have a habit of biting them off. Once when I bit my nail, the middle portion came off, leaving underneath of the nail exposed. It has been about three weeks. As the nail started to grow, it was growing out like a hangnail. I clipped it last night, and now more of the underneath is exposed. I believe the lunula is exposed. I have been keeping Polysporin and a bandage on it.

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Hello,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

The picture (attachment removed to protect patient identity) looks like a small bumpy growth. I am not able to see it clearly if it is flat or bumpy.

For me, it looks like pyogenic granuloma. It is a benign growth made of small blood capillaries. It is usually painless but can bleed with minor trauma.

It is hard to say if it is exactly pyogenic granuloma, which I am thinking of, considering the site. There has been constant irritation from the fake nail, which all favor the diagnosis.

The treatment for pyogenic granuloma is the removal of the bump through electrocautery or radiofrequency.

Another possible diagnosis is onychomadesis. It is the separation of nail from its nail bed. There are many reasons to it. In your case, I believe it is from nail trauma. Treatment would be to avoid using artificial nails until there is healing. Keep the area covered with band-aid after cleaning with Luke warm water.


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