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Quick laser treatments destroy toenail fungus without harming the surrounding skin
Deep cracks, ragged bumps, a yellowish hue—these are the signs of nail fungus, and they can’t be fixed by a mani-pedi. Although most of the 2–13% of North Americans dealing with nail fungus seek treatment for cosmetic reasons, over time, the affected area can become quite painful. Until 2010, the only treatments available were topical solutions, which had a poor success rate, and oral medications, which carried a slight risk of liver damage. Finally, the medical-laser boom began to take aim at podiatry, and today, several companies make machines that incinerate fungus with beams of laser light. The fungus absorbs the laser’s destructive energy at a much faster rate than the surrounding tissue, making the risk of treatment slight to nonexistent. The affected nail cannot be restored, but if the treatment has worked, the patient will begin to see results as the new, clear nail grows in.