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Does Laser Work For Toenail Fungus

Things You Should Know About Laser Treatment For Nail Fungus

Laser for Toenail Fungus: Does it really work? By Seattle Podiatrist Larry Huppin

Until recently, no treatment for nail fungus has clearly distinguished itself as the gold standarddue to less than optimal results and potentially harmful side effects. However, with the implementation of the laser for fungal toenail treatment, it has quickly emerged as the most effective and least harmful option for curing toenail fungus. Nail fungus, or onychomycosis, is a fungal infection that causes the nails to grow thick, discolored and brittle.

It is usually seen in the nails of the feet because of the heat, humidity and darkness produced by the shoe, which happens to be the optimal environment for fungal growth. Nail fungus is not just a cosmetic problem as it can cause painful ingrown toenails due to deformity of the nail plate as a result of the fungal penetration. It can also cause bacterial infection due to physical trauma to the surrounding toes from the large, thick nail plate. Finally, it can cause pain from shoe pressure due to the thickness of the nail.

Laser Therapy For Fungal Toenails

Now, by many requests from patients, WE HAVE ACQUIRED THE FDA APPROVED LASER THE HYPERBLUE 1530 SYSTEM. This is approved for temporary clearing of fungus of the nail. The laser light penetrates through the nail and soft tissue to both kill fungus in its path, and promotes new nail growth. Once the living fungus is zapped by the laser, healthy nails begin to grow from the cuticle of the nail. This utilizes infrared radiation which is not painful and it is safe to gently heat the base of the nail. This area of the nail is where the fungus survives.

This system eradicates the fungus. It will require repeat visits for treatment over a 3 month period. The treatment is typically 5-15 minutes, spaced 30 days apart for 3 months. As the nail grows slowly, it can take approximately 6-12 months for the new nail to replace the old infected nail. It is VERY EFFECTIVE.

Clinical studies show that the laser kills toenail fungus and promotes clear nail growth with a single treatment in better than 80% of cases. The laser treatment is safe, effective, and most patients improve usually after their first treatment.

There are several advantages of applying laser treatment to toenail fungus. They are:

  • Safe, painless treatment

  • No side effects or drugs

  • No liver enzyme test required

  • No recovery time – just walk in and walk out

  • Only 15 minutes required to treat the toenail fungus on both feet, if all 10 nails are being treated.

How Do You Know If You Have Toenail Fungus

Your best bet is to get your toenails looked at by your trusty podiatrist. If you see any of the signs weve mentioned, just make an appointment for an evaluation. Since the infection will usually spread, youre better safe than sorry.

Detecting it early also improves the chances for the treatment to do its thing and keep it from moving onto other nails or your skin.

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At Home Laser Treatment For Nail Fungus

If you have been dealing with nail fungus, you may be aware of the growing popularity of the use of lasers as a useful treatment option. What you may not know, is that now you dont have to go to a doctor or medical spa for a laser treatment. There are new, small, hand-held devices that you can use to kill the fungus yourself from the comfort of your own home. These DIY lasers rely on a particular type of intense light to kill the fungus, which is a common cause of painful, unsightly toenails. They are part of the new wave of at home laser products that can help with pain relief, skin care, anti-aging, and hair removal.

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What Are The Types Of Laser Treatment For Fungal Nail Infections

Does Laser Toenail Fungus Removal Work? A 2020 Review ...

Two types of lasers using different types of laser energy are used for the treatment:-

Thermal laser treatment:

  • The laser device emits pulses that easily and effectively penetrate the nail, generating heat at the site of infection beneath the nail plate.
  • CO2 lasers or pinpoint foot laser which uses YAG lasers with a wavelength of 870 nm, 930 nm, or 1320 nm are used to increase the localized temperature.
  • Due to heat, the infected tissue is gasified and decomposed, destroying the fungus causing the infection.
  • The heat from the lasers also has a sterilizing effect, which inhibits fungal growth.
  • The treatment is usually painless, and only a warm sensation is felt at your nail.

Cold laser fungal nail treatment:

  • It uses two low-level light beams produced by a lunula laser, directed simultaneously on the nail to damage the living fungus and help your body clear the infection.
  • The frequency of laser beams does not generate any heat, hence called cold lasers.
  • This treatment is safe, pain-free, and without any side effects.
  • Laser nail treatment has several advantages over topical and oral anti-fungal.

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What Are My Options

Successful treatment of fungus of the nail unit may reduce thickness, improve appearance, and make trimming easier. However, treatment is not generally considered medically necessary unless other factors are present such as diabetes, poor circulation, excessive pressure, or lack of normal sensation.

Options include:

  • Not having treatment and living with the condition

  • The use of liquid antifungals such as prescription Penlac which reports a 7% cure rate and 44% improvement rate.

  • The use of prescription oral Lamisil which reports up to a 66% success rate with need for blood tests to monitor for possible liver damage.

  • Laser treatment

Does Laser For Toenail Fungus Work

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Natural Cures For Foot Nail Fungus

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Cost Of Laser Treatment For Toenail Fungus

How does laser treatment of Toenail Fungus work?

The first thing after hearing about the Laser treatment for fungus removal that comes to ones mind is that how much does laser toenail fungus removal cost. And the only thing that is not suitable for those who are not ready to pay a huge amount is the price.

The laser toenail fungus removal cost will be around 700 Dollars. In some cases, if you are going for some extra treatments the amount may increase.

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Study Of The Use Of Low Level Laser Light Therapy To Treat Toenail Fungus

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details.
First Posted : February 17, 2012Results First Posted : December 11, 2015Last Update Posted : December 11, 2015
Condition or disease
Not Applicable
Layout table for study information

Study Type :
An Evaluation of the Effect of the Erchonia FX-405 on Treating Toenail Onychomycosis Clinical Study
Study Start Date :
Experimental: Erchonia FX-405 LaserThe Erchonia FX-405 Laser is a dual-diode laser emitting 15.5-17.5 milliWatts of 635 nanometer red laser light and 23.5-25.5 mW 405 nm blue laser light. The the power reaching the surface of the skin is 1 mW Device: Erchonia FX-405 LaserThe Erchonia FX-405 dual diode laser light is directed at the great toenail at a distance of approximately 6 inches above the toenail. The dual wavelengths of 405 nm and 635 nm are activated simultaneously for 10 minutes of total treatment administration time.

Information from the National Library of Medicine

What Are The Problems With Oral Remedies For Toenail Fungus

The side effects take center stage. They include headache, nausea, diarrhea, and sometimes serious systemic reactions. Some of those side effects are so potentially hazardous that constant monitoring of liver function is required.

Another drawback of ointments and oral remedies for toenail fungus is the extended duration of treatment. Toenails grow slowly. The nail on a big toe can take well over a year to completely replace itself. So the traditional remedies must be administered for a correspondingly lengthy time period.

Even after a successful treatment, fungal colonies often reestablish themselves.

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How Do I Know If I Have Toenail Fungus

A toenail fungal infection has a slow, eroding effect on your toenail but usually takes a while to develop and spread so you might not notice it at first.

Here are some of the toenail symptoms you may encounter:

  • Change in color often the toenail turns yellow, brown, white, or eve green
  • Nails become thicksometimes so thick you cant get a toenail clipper to work
  • Toenail shape becomes curved, twisted, or ingrown on the sides
  • Initially, a white dot may show itself which then slowly grows larger
  • Toenails become brittle and break easily, sometimes they seem to crumble or get chalky
  • Toenails become flaky and break off
  • Sometimes the toenail has a “cottage-cheese” type substance especially under the hard-outer shell
  • Toenails may loosen and separate off the nail bed occasionally they may even fall of entirely
  • You get pain around the toenail as the hard, curved nail digs down into the sides
  • There is a bad-cheese smell coming from your toenails
  • Eventually, the fungus spreads to your other toes and even out onto the skin on your feet

If left untreated, you can develop a secondary bacterial infection and even get ulcerations, which are extremely dangerous if you are diabetic or have poor circulation. For some people, toenail fungus has even ultimately led to the surgical amputation of toes or even leg amputations.

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How Soon Will I See Improvements After Cutera

In humans, nails grow at an average rate of 3 mm a month. Fingernails require 3 to 6 months to re-grow completely, and toenails require 12 to 18 months. Actual growth rate is dependent upon age, gender, season, exercise level, diet, and hereditary factors. As the new nail grows, the healthy nail will be seen at the base.

Are There Any Side Effects

Overall, laser treatment has minimal side effects reported. Q-Switched and cold laser studies report no side effects whatsoever.

During heat laser treatment, one in three people reported pain, burning or darkening in the treated area. Note that heat applied in this manner can generate unpleasant laser plumes and a certain smell. Also, laser light can decrease collagen.

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How Does Laser Toenail Fungus Treatment Work

Laser toenail fungus treatment delivers laser energy that destroys organisms that cause this fungus. The laser light beams that enter the toenail are able to target and eliminate the source of fungus while also promoting the growth of new, healthy toenails. This provides an effective form of treatment that kills fungus at the source, which lowers the risk of having toenail fungus come back. However, individuals should keep in mind that since this fungus is present in the environment, its possible for another infection to occur.

Does Laser Toenail Fungus Removal Work

Do Laser Treatments For Nail Fungus Really Work?

Some people will experience improvement after one laser nail fungus removal treatment however, in most cases, it will take more than that. The treatment can last for months.

But don’t worry! That doesn’t mean that the laser is inefficient. That is simply the nature of the condition, and there is a good chance it will take a long time to treat it no matter what kind of therapy you’re using.

  • Tolnaftate is a drug that is primarily used for nail fungus. The substance works well in subduing fungal infections, no

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What Are Treatment Options For Toenail Fungus

Oral drugs can be effective in treating the fungus. The medication can take anywhere from 12 months or longer for clearing of the nail. Side effects are a concern with oral treatment, especially liver damage and heart failure. Blood tests are necessary weekly or monthly to monitor for side effects. Topical drugs less effective in treating nail fungus and restoring clear nails. It is applied twice a day until the nails are clear, which can be 12-24 months. There are no significant side effects, however in some patients, the medication cannot penetrate the nail to reach the infection. Laser treatments are effective in treating the infection and restoring clear nails. 88% of patients experience at least some improvement. A clinical study shows no adverse effects.

What Causes Toenail Fungus

Fungal infections in your toenail, called onychomycosis, occur when your foot encounters a yeast or mold. Everyone comes into contact with these organisms because they thrive in dark, moist places, like the inside of your shoes. However, a fungal infection only develops if you have a cut or cracked nail that allows the microorganisms to get into the tissues.

Your risk of developing a fungal infection increases if you:

  • Dont wear socks
  • Have feet that sweat excessively
  • Had a previous toenail injury
  • Go barefoot in gyms and around pools
  • Have a history of athletes foot

Athletes foot is a fungal skin infection thats highly contagious and can spread to cause an infection in your toenail. The fungus can be passed through gym showers and locker rooms, or other damp areas where the fungus thrives.

Your age also increases the risk of toenail fungus. As you get older, your nails become brittle and crack, which leaves an opening for fungi.

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How To Treat Toenail Fungus

Traditional remedies for toenail fungus include creams and ointments, both over the counter and prescriptive. But the efficacy of these preparations is limited. The dermatophyte fungi burrow between the layers of your nails. Because those nails are nonporous, its difficult for ointments to penetrate enough to take effect. The success rate for topical ointments is therefore quite low.

Systemic medications, taken orally, use a more direct approach to address the fungus. You take the pill, the medication is absorbed into your bloodstream, and the fungus is attacked within the nail formation process.

Laser Treatment For Toenail Fungus In Long Beach Ca 90808

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There is a better way to treat toenail fungus that does not entail using harsh medicines that work in only about half of the patients. We are pleased to be now offering the Cutera GenesisPlus laser treatment for toenail fungus in Long Beach, CA. This laser is FDA approved. GenesisPlus is a quick and comfortable way to clear the nail without drug therapy. Clear nail growth can be observed following 1-2 fifteen minute laser treatments.

Toenail fungus often occurs in adults and can be contracted in many different ways including pedicures by others, nail injuries, or even wearing closed-in footwear. However contracted, usually you will notice brittleness, discoloration, and thickening of the nail including change of shape. If left untreated it can permanently damage the nail and spread to surrounding nails and skin.

Over-the-counter creams and ointments generally do not help in the fight of toenail fungus. Medicines for toenail fungus need about 12 months to treat this condition and are only successful in about 50% of the patients. Even if your healthcare provider removes the nail it may take over 1 year for the toenail to grow back. We have awesome results with our Cutera GenesisPlus laser treatment.

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Types Of Laser Treatment For Toenail Fungus

There are basically two types of laser treatment for the toenail fungus.

  • Cold Laser treatment
  • Hot Laser treatment
  • Lets know these through a comparison chart to better understand these and to know the difference too.

    Lunula Cold laser treatment
    It is pain-free, no burning sensations. After the session, the patient will feel pain
    It will only take 15 to 30 minutes for the entire session. Almost takes 40 minutes or one hour.
    You can get all your toenails treated with this laser treatment. Only a single toenail can be treated at a time, just to keep your feets tissue safe from burning.
    You can your shoes and socks immediately after the treatment, without even waiting for a second. I know it would not make much difference, but still. You cannot wear your favorite shoe right after the session, not even the socks, wait for almost 48 hours until the skin gets back to its normal temperature.
    It is highly suitable for children old people, and pregnant women. Not suitable for sensitive people, like children, women, and old people
    There is no risk of the nail-bed damage, the colder laser will only increase the circulation. There is a risk of nail-bed damage with this hot laser treatment.


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