Blackened nail: how to react?

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Blackened nail: how to react?

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Blackened nail: how to react?


You have suffered a shock, and your nail is now black, partially or entirely. Will it fall? What to do and especially what gesture to avoid? Answers from our dermatologist.

  1. Make sure it's a hematoma
  2. Do not pierce the nail yourself!
  3. Regrowth time: patience required

Reasons for having a blackened nail? The most classic case is due to a shock: at the level of a fingernail or hand nail, a hematoma forms which gives this characteristic very dark colour.

"Athletes - especially when they wear unsuitable or a little too small shoes - are well aware of these cases of blackened nails on the feet," says Dr Naima Midoun, a dermatologist in Paris.

Make sure it's a hematoma

If this happens to you, and your fingernail or toenail is black, the first question to ask yourself is "Am I sure this dark spot is due to a shock?" "

If there is any doubt, an appointment with the dermatologist is essential, as explained by Dr Naima Midoun: “The most important thing is to rule out any risk of melanoma. It is the most important. Then, if it is a hematoma, in other words, a bruise under the nail, you must take your pain in patience because the stain can take a very long time to leave. "

Another sign to spot to be sure that it is a hematoma and nothing else: the stain will go up as the nail grows.

Do not pierce the nail yourself!

Should we necessarily consult? No, if the hematoma is perfectly-identified and no pain is felt.

"If the nail is painful, the dermatologist can pierce the nail to free the blood and remove the pressure," explains Dr Midoun. And I absolutely do not recommend doing it yourself. Indeed, the risk of infection and panaris is then very real. In addition, a somewhat haphazard “tinkering” could cause deformation of the nail when it grows back. And once it is deformed, the nail thus remains permanently. "

Regrowth time: patience required

To summarize: without pain and after eliminating any risk of melanoma, there is not much to do to treat a blackened nail. If it has to fall, it will be difficult to prevent it, and then the process should be accompanied smoothly. A tip to wait: camouflage the dark spot with coloured nail polish.

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