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Nail Surgery: (Partial nail avulsion with phenolisation of the nail matrix)

Nai Surgery is routinely completed under a local anaesthetic, which involves two injections at the base of the toe. Once the toe is confirmed to be numb, a tight rubber band is placed around the base of the toe.

A small wedge of the nail is removed from the offending side or sides of the toenail plate (partial nail avulsion).  This creates a thinner nail plate and reduces the pressure on the skin at the side of the nail.

To stop the section of nail regrowing, a chemical called phenol is applied to the base of the nail  The procedure takes approximately 10-15minutes, however, please allow for up to 1hour for preparation and monitoring after.

A dressing will be placed on the toe which needs to be left for 24-48hours, you will be provided with instructions on how to care for your toe.

Healing takes approximately 4-6weeks, for this duration is important to keep a dressing on your toe, it is quite normal for the surgery site to discharge whilst healing is occurring.

There may be some mild pain and discomfort following the procedure for which it is advised you take some painkillers prior to the anaesthetic wearing off. It is important for you to go home and elevate your foot and rest for 24hours after the procedure.

Initially, a wider fitting shoe or sandals is the best to wear as the initial dressing maybe bulky.

Risks and Complications:

Every effort is made to reduce these, however, pertinent risks and complications include:

  • Infection (2-4%)
  • Recurrence and re-growth of the offending nail 5-8% and up to 10% undergoing total nail removal.
  • Delayed healing may occur which may be brought about by a chronic infection pre-op
  • A thickened nail plate
  • Altered nail shape, every effort is made to provide a cosmetic appearance, sometimes due to a large involuted plate or chronic infection, a large section needs to be removed.


Please get in contact if you have any questions


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