About podiatrists Your Podiatrist Talks About Nail Podiatrists are highly skilled health Many health funds in Australia professionals trained to deal with provide cover for podiatry services on the prevention, diagnosis, treatment their ancillary tables and government nail surgery nail surgery and rehabilitation of medical and funded services are available through surgical conditions of the feet the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, Surgery and lower limbs. Podiatrists have some public hospitals and community completed a Bachelor of Podiatry or health centres. In New Zealand, higher degree, and are continually some podiatry services may be partly upgrading their skills and knowledge or fully covered by the Accident through further education and Compensation Corporation. training. All podiatrists undergo training *This information is not to be used as in their undergraduate program to a substitute for podiatric or medical safely administer local anaesthetic assistance. and perform nail surgery. Additional post-graduate training is required in both Australia and New Zealand in order to perform deep tissue and bone surgery. My podiatrist is: Where can I find a podiatrist? To find a podiatrist online go to http://www.findapodiatrist.org. More information about foot care is available at http://www.feet.org.au. In Australia refer to your Yellow Pages™ for a list of podiatrists in your area, or contact the Australian Podiatry Association in your state. In New Zealand contact Podiatry Published in the interest of foot health by the New Zealand Inc. Australasian Podiatry Council ACN 008 488 748 Photos courtesy of Department of Podiatry, La Trobe University nail surgery nail surgery Nail Surgery What does a partial nail What happens after Nail surgery is a common procedure avulsion involve? the procedure? performed by most podiatrists to Your podiatrist will conduct a complete The offending portion of the nail is Re-dressings at home and a few effectively treat an ingrown toenail – nail surgery nail surgery assessment, taking a medical history, then gently lifted and trimmed away, consultations with your podiatrist a nail that has pierced (or is pressing a list of any medications that have generally without the toe being cut or may be required over the two to against) the adjacent skin of the toe been prescribed for you as well as stitched. Both sides or the entire nail three weeks following the procedure. causing pain and inflammation and considering any other clinical factors may be removed this way. A chemical For the first few days after the sometimes infection. that will determine whether or not may also be used at this point to assist procedure pain relief, the use Surgery may be required when this surgery is suited to you. An in preventing nail regrowth. of open toed shoes and activity an ingrown toenail repeatedly gets assessment will generally also include Once the procedure is completed, modification may be necessary, infected, is continually painful, the an examination of blood supply to the the tourniquet is removed and a however interference with day to patient is unable to wear shoes or the foot. sterile surgical dressing is applied. The day activities is generally minimal. condition inhibits work, sporting or patient is able to walk immediately other activities. Before surgery is recommended, afterwards, however assistance getting What are the potential home is strongly recommended. your podiatrist will explore other complications? conservative treatment options. As with any surgical procedure there is some risk of complication, Nail surgery performed however this procedure is known to by podiatrists be very safe and effective. The most common side-effects are A ‘Partial Nail Avulsion’ (known post-operative infection in the short as a PNA or nail root and matrix term and the possibility of regrowth resection) is a minor nail procedure of the nail over time. The risks of which aims to permanently treat Only the affected segment of nail is removed, infection can be minimised through ingrown toenails. The procedure leaving a small area at the base of the nail good post-operative care and your is usually performed in podiatrists’ (underlying the cuticle) to heal after the podiatrist will advise and assist with rooms, takes around one hour and the procedure. your situation. patient is able to walk immediately afterwards. The procedure itself is performed under local anaesthetic via injection How your into the toe to numb the area. The podiatrist can help anaesthetic will wear off in about two Regular visits to your podiatrist hours. can manage and prevent ingrown Once numb, a tight elastic ring toenails, alleviate pain, and help called a tourniquet is applied to the keep you on your feet and mobile. toe to control bleeding and the area is prepped to minimise the risk of The offending portion of the nail is trimmed infection. Postoperative dressings will require some further away attention at home.