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by Beth Howard
Are your nails healthy? Find out; diet and eyesight; more
When it comes to health, your fingernails tell all, says Joshua L. Fox, M.D., director of Advanced Dermatology in Fresh Meadows, NY, and a spokesperson for the American Academy of Dermatology: “Nails often give the first indication of an underlying disease or condition.” Here are some of the hints your nails may be giving you – and what they could mean.
Clue: Clubbing (when the nails curve like a spoon).
Condition: Heart disease or Crohn’s disease -an inflammation of the small intestine that triggers pain and diarrhea.
Clue: Small pits in the nail.
Condition: Psoriasis, a chronic skin condition that causes itching and burning.
Clue: Discolored nails that lift off the nail bed.
Condition: Have a doctor take a culture of the nail before treatment. As many as 50 percent of discolored nails are misdiagnosed and mistreated. It may, in fact, be a fungal infection, from contact with an allergen or nail wrapping.
Clue: Light or pale white nails.