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Toenail Fungus Specialist

Chicagoland Foot and Ankle

Board Certified Foot and Ankle Specialists & Surgeons located in Beverly/Mt. Greenwood, Portage Park Chicago, IL & Orland Park, IL & New Lenox, IL

Discolored, brittle nails could be a sign of toenail fungus. Toenail fungus afflicts 15% of Americans, plaguing athletes and fitness buffs in particular. Please contact Chicagoland Foot and Ankle to discuss treatment.

Toenail Fungus

What is toenail fungus?

Toenail fungus is common, affecting about 15% of Americans. The fungus occurs when microorganisms enter the skin around your toes, typically when you stub your toe or through some minor injury. 


As the fungus spreads, your toenails become discolored and brittle, among other symptoms. It's best to seek prompt treatment from Chicagoland Foot and Ankle to save your nail and prevent the fungus from infecting additional toes. 

How do I know I have toenail fungus?

You may have this condition if your toenails are showing some of these signs:

  • Thickened nails
  • Yellow-brown or white areas of discoloration
  • Crumbling or brittle 
  • Distorted in shape
  • Darkened color (due to the buildup of debris under your nail)
  • Foul smell

Although nail fungus affects fingernails, it's more common in toenails.

Who is at risk for toenail fungus?

Athletes and fitness buffs tend to get fungal infections because their physical activity increases their chances of toe injuries that may lead to infection. 

Spending time in moist environments, such as public swimming pools, public showers, and locker rooms, also raises your risk of toenail fungus. The infections also are more common if you have diabetes or have insulin resistance. 

How is toenail fungus treated?

Long-standing treatment methods include topical creams and oral medications, such as:

  • Terbinafine
  • Itraconazole
  • Fluconazole